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The most commonly performed bariatric procedure worldwide

Learn About Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Surgery

gastric-bypass-857wThe Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass – often called gastric bypass – is considered the ‘gold standard’ of weight loss surgery and is the most commonly performed bariatric procedure worldwide.

There are two components to the procedure. First, a small stomach pouch, approximately one ounce in volume, is created by dividing the top of the stomach from the rest of the stomach. Next, the first portion of the small intestine is divided, and the bottom end of the divided small intestine is brought up and connected to the newly created small stomach pouch. The procedure is completed by connecting the top portion of the divided small intestine to the small intestine further down so that the stomach acids and digestive enzymes from the bypassed stomach and first portion of small intestine will eventually mix with the food.

The gastric bypass works by several mechanisms. First, similar to most bariatric procedures, the newly created stomach pouch is considerably smaller and facilitates significantly smaller meals, which translates into less calories consumed. Additionally, because there is less digestion of food by the smaller stomach pouch, and there is a segment of small intestine that would normally absorb calories as well as nutrients that no longer has food going through it, there is probably to some degree less absorption of calories and nutrients. Most importantly, the rerouting of the food stream produces changes in gut hormones that promote satiety, suppress hunger, and reverse one of the primary mechanisms by which obesity induces type 2 diabetes.

  • Produces significant long-term weight loss (60 to 80 percent excess weight loss)
  • Restricts the amount of food that can be consumed
  • May lead to conditions that increase energy expenditure
  • Produces favorable changes in gut hormones that reduce appetite and enhance satiety
  • Typical maintenance of >50% excess weight loss
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Am I A Candidate for Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Surgery?

Gastric Bypass Surgery is not right for everyone. Here are some of the things we will consider when evaluating your candidacy for gastric bypass surgery.

The Bypass Procedure is indicated for use in weight reduction for severely obese patients with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of at least 40 or a BMI of at least 35 with one or more severe co-morbid conditions, or those who are 100 lbs. or more over their estimated ideal weight.

This operation may be right for you if:

  • You are at least 18 years old.
  • Your BMI is 40 or higher or you weigh at least twice your ideal weight or you weigh at least 100 pounds more than your ideal weight. (BMI is calculated by dividing body weight (lbs.) by height in inches squared (in²) and multiplying that amount by 703).
  • BMI Calculator
  • You have been overweight for more than 5 years.
  • Your serious attempts to lose weight have had only short-term success.
  • You do not have any other disease that may have caused your obesity.
  • You are prepared to make substantial changes in your eating habits and lifestyle.
  • You are willing to continue being monitored by the specialist who is treating you.
  • You do not drink alcohol in excess.

If you do not meet the BMI or weight criteria, you still may be considered for surgery if your BMI is at least 35 and you are suffering from serious health problems related to obesity.

  • Is technically a more complex operation than the adjustable gastric banding or laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy and potentially could result in greater complication rates
  • Can lead to long-term vitamin/mineral deficiencies particularly deficits in vitamin B12, iron, calcium, and folate
  • Generally has a longer hospital stay than the adjustable gastric banding
  • 1. Requires adherence to dietary recommendations, life-long vitamin/mineral supplementation, and follow-up compliance
While the bypass operation is an effective treatment for morbid obesity, the pounds do not come off by themselves. By-pass surgery is an aid to support you in achieving lasting results by limiting food intake, reducing appetite and slowing digestion. However, your motivation and commitment to adopt a new lifestyle are extremely important for long-term weight loss. You must be committed to new eating habits for the rest of your life. Exercise is an equally important component of a changed lifestyle.
This is a non reversible procedure so it is considered permanent.
This operation is very complex and therefore it has several disadvantages in comparison to the sleeve and Lap Band. The stomach and lower bowel is cut, stapled and rerouted which can result in leakage or possible stenosis or smaller opening. Patients who eat foods that are high in fat and sugars may experience “Dumping Syndrome”. This is a result of the intestine not able to absorb the fatty foods and the patient will experience gastric distress such as nausea, vomiting, cramping, diarrhea and possible sweats. The last adverse effect could be vitamin deficiencies of important nutrients such as Vit D, calcium, B complex, magnesium and iron.

Frequently Asked Questions About Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Surgery

What is involved in a Roux-en-Y gastric bypass procedure?
What is the recovery time following Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery?
When is bariatric surgery considered successful?
Are there activity restrictions following bariatric surgery?
What are the dietary restrictions following weight loss surgery?
Will I have to take dietary or nutritional supplements for life?
What about exercise after gastric bypass surgery?
Is it possible to gain the weight back after gastric bypass surgery?

Ready To Get Started?

Find out about our free informational seminar on bariatric surgeries including Gastric Bypass, Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Band, and Sleeve Gastrectomy

References: 1. Fisher BL, et al. Am J Surg. 2002;184:9S-16S. 2. DeMaria EJ, et al. Surg Obes Relat Dis. 2010;6:347-355. 3. Chaston TB, et al. Int J Obes. 2007;5:743-750
Reference: 1. Nguyen NT, etal. Ann Surg 2009;250: 631-641

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