Gastric Bypass Surgery is a surgery that helps lose weight by altering the digestive system - limiting the amount of food intake or absorbption of nutrients or both.
This surgery is used as last resort when diet plan, exercising and medication does not help in losing weight.
You will be recommended gastric bypass surgery when:
Your Body Mass Index (BMI) is 40 or higher
Your Body Mass Index (BMI) is between 35 to 39.9 and obesity may lead to serious health problems like hypertension, type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, stroke, heart diseases.
You are unable to lose weight even after strongly following a diet plan and exercise regimen.
Extensive screening is required before the surgery. All obese persons do not qualify for a gastric bypass.
Various lab tests will be conducted.
Strict restrictions will be laid on food intake.
Medications will be monitored.
Smoking has to be avoided.
Exercise regime might be recommended.
The surgery is performed under general anesthesia by an exeperience surgical gastroenterologist or bariatric surgeon. It may be done as an open surgery or a laparoscopic surgery.
Depending on the type of alternations made to the digestive system, gastric bypass surgeries can be performed in 2 ways:
Roux en Y Gastric Bypass
The stomach is divided into a small upper and a larger lower section such that the food you eat will be received only by the upper section and will not go to the lower section. So you will feel full sooner and will not eat much.
Next, the upper section of the stomach is connected to small part of the small intestine. This means that the food will not travel through the entire length of the small intestine and hence body will absorb fewer calories.
It may take about 3 hours to complete the surgery.
This is an irreversible procedure.
Hospital stay of about 3-4 days will be required.
Biliopancreatic Diversion with Duodenal Switch
This is a complex gastric bypass surgery in which 80% of the stomach is removed. It is used in cases where Body Mass Index (BMI) is more than 50.
Pyloric Valve and a minute portion of small intestine that connects to duodenum is kept while rest of the parts are removed.
This surgery helps in limiting the amount of food intake or absorbption of nutrients.
Generally, you will not be allowed to intake any food for 1 to 2 days. You will be asked to follow a strict diet plan for 10 to 12 weeks after the surgery.
Commonly, the patients experience the following:
Hairfall and hair thinning
Body aches and feeling tired
Rapid mood changes
You will have to visit your doctor regularly after the surgery.
Regular exercise and healthy diet must be maintained post surgery. Lifestyle modification is must after surgery.
Risk and Complications
Gastric Bypass is a major surgery and may pose severe risks and complications.
There is risk of excessive bleeding, infection, reaction to anesthetic medications and formation of blood clots in the legs which may travel to lungs as well.
Hernia may be caused due to bowel rearrangement.
There may be leakage and even scarring of the link created between stomach and small intestine.
Patients may experience bowel obstruction, nausea or vomiting and diarrhea post surgery.
Blood sugar level may be highly reduced.
In the long term, patients may have gallstones, ulcers and perforation in the stomach, and experience severe diarrhea and vomitting.
It is one of the most common types of bariatric surgery.
It is also called as Bariatric surgery - gastric bypass.
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