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Gastric Bypass

Effective Weight Loss Surgery

Laparoscopic gastric bypass (LGB) surgery involves stapling the stomach to create a small pouch. The pouch is about the size of an egg. Your surgeon then re-connects your intestine to the new pouch. Food can now “bypass” the larger part of the stomach and most of the small intestine.

With a smaller stomach, you feel full sooner and eat less. The bypass surgery also limits the small intestine from absorbing calories. Compared to the sleeve, gastric bypass often results in more weight loss—about 60–80% of extra body weight. It’s also better for treating reflux, heartburn, and Type 2 diabetes. For this reason, gastric bypass can be a great option for patients with obesity-related conditions.

Most people who get gastric bypass go home the day after the surgery. They return to normal activities within two or three weeks.

A few of the most common risks of gastric bypass surgery include:

  • Dumping syndrome: About 20% of patients get dumping syndrome. It comes with fatigue, stomach pain, a racing heart, sweating, and diarrhea. Symptoms usually appear after high-calorie meals. You can manage dumping syndrome with diet changes or sometimes medicine.
  • Intestinal blockage: There’s a less than 1% lifetime risk of your intestine getting blocked. Blockage requires emergency surgery.
  • Malnutrition: Gastric bypass increases your lifetime risk of not getting the nutrients you need. Most people have to take vitamins.
  • Ulcers: There’s a 5–10% chance of getting an ulcer between the stomach and small intestine. Ulcers require medicine and possible surgery. The risk of ulcers is mainly linked to smoking, drinking alcohol, and using medicines such as steroids and NSAIDs (for example, ibuprofen, Advil, and aspirin).
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