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What is Gastric Bypass Surgery?
Gastric bypass surgery is a weight loss procedure that makes the stomach smaller so it holds less food. Fewer calories are absorbed by the body because the food is no longer processed in the stomach and part of the small intestine.
Gastric bypass surgery is also known as Roux-en-Y gastric bypass.
What are the types of Gastric Bypass Surgery?
The most common Gastric Bypass procedures are:
Who is a suitable candidate for Gastric Bypass Surgery?
- Open procedure:
- The surgeon makes a large cut in the abdomen and performs the bypass through the incision.
- The surgeon makes the stomach smaller by dividing it into a top pouch with staples.
- The stomach is then connected to the middle of the small intestine and bypasses the stomach and upper part of the small intestine.
- Laparoscopic procedure:
- The surgeon uses a laparoscope through small incisions to guide small instruments in making the bypass.
- The stomach is made smaller with staples and is then connected to the middle of the small intestine in the same way as the open procedure.
Gastric bypass surgery is suitable for people with a BMI of 40 or more, or a BMI of 35 or more with a medical condition related to obesity such as diabetes or heart disease.
What are the chances of success with Gastric Bypass Surgery?
According to statistics from the Mayo Clinic, people can lose around one third of their excess weight in one to four years following gastric bypass surgery.
Weight is lost more quickly following surgery and decreases over time.
Sticking to a healthy diet and taking exercise increases the chances of success.
Duration of procedure/surgery:
Gastric bypass surgery takes between 1 and 3 hours to complete.
Patients are normally admitted for 3 to 5 days following gastric bypass procedure.
Recovery from a gastric bypass surgery procedure generally takes between 4 and 6 weeks.
- Damage to the stomach, intestines or other organs.
- Leaking between the staples in the stomach.
- Breakdown of the stomach pouch.
- Nutrition problems from low iron and vitamin levels.
- Blood clots.
- You will only have liquids for the first one to three days following gastric bypass surgery.
- Wear compression stockings to prevent deep vein thrombosis.
- Take over-the-counter pain killers for pain relief.
- You will only be able to eat very small amounts of food following gastric bypass surgery and need to avoid simple sugars such as soft drinks and candy.
- You must chew your food thoroughly when you eat.
Learn more about Gastric Bypass