Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Surgery

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Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Surgery

Gastric bypass surgery is designed to shrink size of the stomach so that the patient is able to eat much less than they used to do earlier. During this operation bariatric surgeons would also re-route or bypass portions of the digestive system so that the patient may not be able to absorb as much food. However, there are many types of gastric bypass surgeries of which Roux-En-Y is the most common type of gastric bypass surgeries performed around the world every year. Bariatric surgeons can also perform this procedure through a laparoscopic technique which involves smaller incisions along with a quick recovery time than the other complicated traditional method. At the beginning of this procedure, bariatric surgeons will create a small stomach pouch by stapling together portion of the stomach or through vertical banding. This is to ensure that patients limit the amount of food they are able to eat. Subsequently, the bariatric surgeon will attach a Y-shaped section of small intestine to the stomach pouch. This is done so as to create a bypass for food in order to skip portions involving the digestive system. As a result of this, the gastric bypass patient will be able to absorb fewer calories & nutrients & which will eventually go on to aid long-term weight loss.

Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Surgery Procedure

There are two components to the gastric bypass surgery procedure. Firstly, it is the creation of a small stomach pouch which is approximately 30 millimeters or one ounce in volume. This is created by dividing the top portion of stomach from the remaining part of the stomach. Following this, the first portion of small intestine is divided & the bottom end of this divided small intestine is brought up to connect with the newly created smaller stomach pouch. The gastric bypass surgery is finally completed by connecting top part of the divided small intestine to the small intestine further down the line so that stomach acids & digestive enzyme from the bypassed stomach & the beginning of small intestine are able to mix with the ingested food. Gastric bypass procedure works through several mechanisms. Similar to many other bariatric procedures, this newly formed stomach pouch is considerably smaller & significantly facilitates smaller meals that translate to lesser consumption of calories. Additionally, since there is less digestion of food due to the small size of the stomach pouch, there is a segment of small intestine which would otherwise have absorbed abundant calories & nutrients passing through it, will now be able to absorb lesser calories & nutrients. Lastly & most importantly, rerouting of food will produce effective changes in gut hormones of the gastric bypass patient & which in turn will suppress hunger, promote satiety & also reverse one of the primary mechanisms through which obesity has been found to induce Type 2 diabetes.

Benefits of Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Surgery

Laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery produces significant amount of long-term weight loss to the tune of 60 – 80 percent of excessive weight. It also restricts the amount of food which can be consumed & may eventually lead to conditions which optimize energy expenditure. Gastric bypass surgery is also able to produce favorable changes in gut hormones & which are able to reduce appetite while enhancing satiety. Gastric bypass is also able to typically maintain over 50 percent of excessive weight loss in the long term.

Recovery Following Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Surgery

Gastric bypass surgery patients will have some pain in the belly after operation & may require pain medications for the first week or so following surgical intervention. The incision site may be tender & sore. Since this surgical intervention is designed to make the size of stomach much smaller, patients may feel full more quickly while eating. Foods which are consumed may also quickly empty into the small intestine & lead to what is known as the dumping syndrome. Quite often this can cause diarrhea & make the patient feel shaky, faint & nauseated. This entire sequence of events can also make it difficult for the patients’ body to gain enough nutrition. Doctors will give specific instructions to patients about what to eat following gastric bypass surgery. The stomach for the first month after undergoing gastric bypass can only handle small amounts of soft foods & drinks while healing. It is therefore important that patients try & sip water throughout the day & avoid getting dehydrated. Patients may also notice that bowel movements are irregular following surgery. Although this is common, they must however try to avoid constipation & straining immediately after gastric bypass surgery & during the recovery period.

Nevertheless bit by bit, patients will be able to add solid food back into their diet. They must however be careful to chew food properly & to stop eating when they feel full. It may though take a little time to get used to because they will feel full even after eating much less than they used to do earlier. It is essential that gastric bypass surgery patients must chew food well & stop eating when they feel full, because they may feel discomfort or nausea & may sometimes even vomit in case they don’t. Patients must also take care that consuming plenty of high-calorie liquids like soda & fruit-juices will work contrary to their aim to lose weight. Moreover, the stomach may also stretch in case they continuously overeat, following which they may lose purpose & may not be able to benefit from gastric bypass surgery. Parts of the small intestine which is involved in absorbing minerals & vitamins are bypassed in this procedure. Because of this gastric bypass patients may end up with deficiency in magnesium, calcium, iron & vitamins. This may even lead to problems like osteoporosis in the long run. In order to prevent such deficiencies, gastric bypass patients must work with dieticians & plan meals & also take extra doses of vitamin B12. Patients will also have to watch their level of activity during the recovery period depending upon whether they have undergone open or laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery. It is important to avoid strenuous exercise or lifting heavy weights during recovery in case they have undergone the open surgery procedure. They will need to allow the belly to heal but may get back to work or normal routine within 4 – 6 weeks of time. However, gastric bypass surgery is most commonly performed as a laparoscopic procedure & which will allow patients recover much faster.

Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Surgery Success Rates

People lose more than half of their excessive weight on an average after undergoing Gastric Roux-En-Y Bypass Surgery. However, after 10 years of time many patients have regained 20 – 25 percent of the weight they lost. Long term success of the gastric bypass procedure is highest among people who are realistic about the amount of weight they are able to lose & who keep up with appointments, maintain lifestyle changes, follow the recommended diet & remain physically active.


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