Sep 13

Laparoscopic Versus Open Incision Surgery

The rapid acceptance of laparoscopy procedures has revolutionized the practice of surgery. This revolution has brought better outcomes to surgical patients, reduced hospital stays, lowered infection rates, and resulted in less pain, quicker recovery times and fewer complications. For many surgical procedures, including common weight loss surgeries like the gastric sleeve and gastric bypass, laparoscopic …

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Sep 12

Evidence-Based Medicine

As in all areas of human activity, medicine has trends that come and go. For example, HRT (hormone replacement therapy) was once routinely used to treat menopausal symptoms and protect women’s long-term health. However, when large studies demonstrated that hormone replacement therapy posed greater risks than benefits for most women, doctors changed their prescribing habits. …

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Sep 11

Remembering 9-11

As with most businesses and professional practices, 9-11 will be a regular work day in our office. Still, we will take a moment to remember the terrible events that occurred on this day 16 years ago. Let us not forget those who lost their lives through no fault of their own, or the brave police …

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Sep 04

Happy Labor Day from Dr. Birkedal and Staff

Labor Day

September 4 is Labor Day. This holiday has never been officially recognized as ‘the end of summer,’ but to many of us it, is just that. Summer is ending, the kids are back to school, and it is time to refocus on our personal and professional goals.  Now may be a good time to stop …

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Sep 04

What is the cost of weight loss surgery?

Most doctors get to be pretty good at answering medical questions, at least about their own specialty. Questions like, “What are my weight loss options?” or “What does ‘gastric sleeve’ mean?” should be easy for a bariatric clinic surgeon to answer. Often, explaining safe weight loss, surgery for weight loss and other weight loss options …

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Aug 28

Varicose and Spider Veins

Varicose veins and spider veins often present cosmetic concerns and can sometimes be a medical concern.  Varicose veins are usually seen in the legs; they are swollen blood vessels that are raised, and can be seen through the skin, appearing to twist and turn. “Spider veins” are so-named because they resemble a web consisting of …

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Aug 21

More Statistics about Bariatric Surgery Today

Like all fields of medicine, bariatric surgery changes with time. The types of weight loss surgery procedures performed most commonly today are quite different from those of just a few years ago. The best source for statistics on bariatric surgery is the ASMBS, the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.  That professional organization reports …

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Aug 18

Thyroid Surgery as a Laparoscopic Procedure

Thyroid surgery is undergoing rapid change. Modern, minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery techniques are making thyroid surgery much easier on the patient, resulting in less pain, and far less scarring. As with other laparoscopic surgery procedures, the laparoscope has made it possible to achieve results that are as effective as conventional surgery without many of the …

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Aug 14

Statistics Tell the Bariatric Surgery Story

Evidence supporting the benefits of bariatric surgery in appropriate patients has been accumulating for years. As long ago as 2004, the Annals of Surgery published a large study that demonstrated the significant reductions in death rates and treatment costs that could be produced by weight-loss surgery procedures. That study looked at a total of 6,781 …

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Aug 09

“Comorbidities,” the Consequences of Obesity

Often, young people think of obesity and its consequences in terms of appearance, social acceptability, body image and fashion. To a person in their mid-twenties, not looking good on the beach may seem more important than an increased risk of heart disease. However, as people begin to age, the reality of obesity’s comorbidities will seem …

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