Obesity surgery 'seeing 1,000 patients in 18 months'
Published: 15th Jul 2012 09:05:40
A leading surgeon operating on obese patients says he has seen young people so overweight during his career that they have not left home in eight years.
Jonathan Barry's team at Morriston Hospital in Swansea has had 1,000 referrals in 18 months.
Dealing with obesity is costing the NHS in Wales an estimated £73m a year.
Plaid Cymru AM Lindsay Whittle has claimed some parents were "killing their own children with kindness" by not tackling their intake of food.
Up to 90 morbidly obese patients a year undergo operations at the Welsh Institute of Metabolic and Obesity Surgery at Morriston to limit the capacity of their stomachs, or receive other treatment to reduce the number of calories they absorb.
We know that this is an expensive disease that isn't going away”
Consultant bariatric surgeon Jonathan Barry told BBC Wales' Sunday Politics programme: "A lot of them are cured of their diabetes and obviously there's a cost benefit to that and after two-and-a-half years there's a significant saving.
"We know that this is an expensive disease that isn't going away."
He added: "These people do have to be brave just to go outside the front door. I think a lot of my patients will tell me they feel quite embarrassed going anywhere and this just reinforces the problem.
"We have seen patients over the years, young people, who haven't left home for eight or nine years."
A study for the Welsh government last year estimated obesity was costing the NHS in Wales £73m pounds a year, but the Swansea University research warned the true costs could be higher.
A World Health Organisation survey put Wales fourth out of 39 nations for overweight or obese 15 year olds - behind only the United States, Greece and Canada.
In his annual report, Wales' chief medical officer Dr Tony Jewell said the growth in overweight and obesity has slowed but there is still much to do.
He questioned the sponsorship of big sports events, such as the Olympics, by fast food brands.
Earlier this month in the Welsh assembly, Plaid Cymru AM Lindsay Whittle suggested drastic action might be needed.
"I don't wish to take children into care but what's happening is that some parents are killing their own children with kindness and, I'm sure they don't mean to but that is actually what's happening," he said.
"We have to send a warning to these parents that these children, in fact, will die even, perhaps, during the parents' lifetime and that's not a pleasant situation for any parent to be in, and die through sheer obesity. We really need to send this warning."
The Welsh government said the children should be with their families where possible and that a range of services was available to help them.
"While the safety of children and young people is paramount, only where a child is at risk is there a role for state intervention," a spokeswoman said.
"The Welsh government is committed to reducing obesity in Wales by encouraging and supporting individuals to make healthier lifestyle choices, including having a healthier diet and being more physically active."
At 08:58:03 in SportAmir Khan appears to have improved his chances of landing a lucrative showdown with Floyd Mayweather by teaming up with the boxing adviser Al Haymon.
At 08:54:42 in WalesThe chief executive and chair of one of Wales' oldest Welsh-language support groups have stepped down from their posts.
At 08:52:53 in SportAntrim's preparations for the forthcoming Ulster Senior Football Championship have been hit by the loss of three key players from the squad.
At 08:51:32 in BusinessSwiss bank Credit Suisse has found nothing "materially untoward" in how it trades foreign currencies, finance officer David Mathers has said.
At 08:45:40 in EnglandA man has been charged with murder after a woman's body was found on Teesside.
At 08:43:50 in WalesDementia services across Wales are not sustainable with changes needed to cope with future demand, a review has found.
At 08:42:36 in EnglandNumbers of homeless people being discharged back on to the streets after hospital treatment is being reduced with a new scheme in Gloucestershire.
At 08:41:52 in EnglandBurglars have been targeting flood-damaged homes in Surrey, with police stopping thousands of people suspected of being involved.
At 08:37:18 in Northern IrelandA 98-year-old document that was intended to stop a rebellion against British rule in Ireland has been sold at auction for 30,000 euros (£24,800).
At 08:20:41 in EnglandSearches have been taking place for a man seen getting into difficulty in a lake.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Obesity surgery 'seeing 1,000 patients in 18 months' [Online] (Updated 15th Jul 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1440595/Obesity-surgery-seeing-1-000-patients-in-18-months [Accessed 16th Apr 2014]
News In Other Categories
Children suffering a mental health crisis are being forced into police custody because 35% of NHS "places of safety" ban under 16s, research shows.
Closeness between couples is reflected in the distance separating them as they sleep, a study has found.
There have been dramatic headlines about 3D technology, encompassing ideas to use 3D printers to make clothes, food, firearms and the parts of a house.
With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
The chief executive and chair of one of Wales' oldest Welsh-language support groups have stepped down from their posts.
Swiss bank Credit Suisse has found nothing "materially untoward" in how it trades foreign currencies, finance officer David Mathers has said.