Bariatrics, in case you didn’t know, is the branch of medicine that concerns the study and treatment of obesity. LimbOs aren’t just for broken bones – there are several complications of obesity that a LimbO can help with.
Although the first treatment obese patients are usually advised of is eating a healthier diet and carrying out regular exercise, if the case is severe then weight loss surgery, aka bariatric surgery, may be considered. However, there are many risks and complications that come with bariatric surgery so these need to be carefully thought through before any big decisions are made.
There are three main types of weight loss surgery: gastric band, gastric bypass and sleeve gastrectomy. The well-known gastric band surgery is where the size of the stomach is reduced using a band so that in order to feel full, the person doesn’t have to eat so much food. A gastric bypass is re-routing of the digestive system past most of the stomach with the result of the person digesting less food and feeling full after eating a smaller quantity of food. Alternatively, a sleeve gastrectomy may be selected as the most suitable option for surgery, which is where a part of the stomach is removed which, like the other two types of surgery, leads to a smaller intake of food being required to make the patient feel full.
One of the serious complications which can occur after gastric band surgery is deep vein thrombosis (DVT). This is where a blood clot develops within a vein in the leg. The anticoagulant heparin is normally prescribed to the patient to prevent further clotting of the blood. Heparin comes in two different forms: standard and low molecular weight. Both types of heparin can cause the following side effects: a skin rash, other allergic reactions, bleeding and, if taken for a long period of time, weakening of the bones.
If you suffer from any of the above skin problems on your leg due to DVT and having a bath or shower has become an uncomfortable chore, then a LimbO can solve this problem. A LimbO will give you the freedom to fully submerge your leg in the bath or shower so that you can relax without the stress of getting hot water or soap on the area of damaged skin. Additionally, you may have a dressing over the area of damaged skin and a LimbO will protect this dressing from getting wet during washing.
Furthermore, compression stockings are often prescribed to patients who have had DVT to prevent post-thrombotic syndrome and calf pain and swelling. As compression stockings need to be worn every day, excluding the night time, for at least two years following DVT, they need to be protected from getting wet in the bath or shower. We know what will be perfect for this… a LimbO! Feel free to relax as you should be able to in the bath or shower.
20-40% of people who have suffered from DVT will develop post-thrombotic syndrome, which affects the calf. Put simply, the blood clot in the vein in your calf can potentially divert the blood to flow into other veins, increasing the pressure in the calf. This can lead to calf pain, swelling, rash and, in extreme cases, ulcers. If you are suffering from a painful rash on your calf and dislike the thought of getting hot water and soap on the area, a LimbO will do the job! If you have developed ulcers on your calf, you will most have it covered with a bandage. Yet again, a LimbO will stop the bandage getting wet in the bath or shower, so you can say goodbye to the nuisance of strip washing!
Another complication relating to obesity which a LimbO can help with that is not linked to deep vein thrombosis is lymphoedema. In addition to lymphoedema predisposing a person to becoming obese, obesity is a risk factor for lymphoedema. One of the complications of lymphoedema is cellulitis, a bacterial infection of the skin, which can become severe and result in blisters and/or wounds on the skin. The LimbO will allow you to fully submerge your affected limb in the bath or shower without discomfort and if you have a bandage covering the damaged area of skin, the LimbO will… well, I think you know.
If you suffer from any of these conditions or know someone who does and you are interested in purchasing a LimbO, they are available on this website or you can call us on 01243 573417. Feel free to email us at [email protected] if you have any questions.
Weight loss surgery, NHS: http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/weight-loss-surgery/Pages/Introduction.aspx
Weight loss surgery – Recovery, NHS: http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/weight-loss-surgery/Pages/Recovery.aspx
Deep vein thrombosis – Treatment, NHS: http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Deep-vein-thrombosis/Pages/Treatment.aspx
Deep vein thrombosis – Complications, NHS: http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Deep-vein-thrombosis/Pages/Complications.aspx
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Written by Joe Redman