Basics Relating To Gastric Bypass Surgery

By Brian Anderson

Bariatric surgeries are a group of surgical procedures whose objective is to assist in weight loss. This is achieved through a reduction of food consumed (reduced stomach volume), a reduction of nutrient absorption or both. Gastric bypass surgery is one of these operations. There are a number of things New York residents need to know if they are considering having this operation.

Generally, weight loss surgeries are done as a last resort procedure for persons that are trying to lose weight but have not responded to lifestyle changes. It is recommended if one is at a high risk of suffering from weight related complications such as type 2 diabetes, gastro-esophageal reflux disease, hypertension, heart disease and stroke among others. The candidate should have a body mass index, BMI, of 40. A lower BMI of 35 is acceptable if they already have complications.

If you meet the required criteria, the operation will be scheduled to take place when you have been adequately prepared. You may need to have a number of tests to ascertain that you are ready for the operation. You may be asked to scale down or withhold on some drugs and foods until the operation is over. Smoking affects wound healing and should be stopped at least two weeks in advance.

There are different forms of gastric bypass surgeries that exist. The most commonly performed is the Roux-en-Y. The reason as to why this type is very popular is the fact that it can be easily done through small incisions. This helps to reduce the rate of complications and to shorten the recovery time. It is performed in two major steps. The first step is the creation of a pouch from the stomach by use of staples or a silicon band.

The next step is to attach a Y-shaped section created from the small intestine onto the pouch. This is what is referred to as the bypass (food skips part of the digestive tract). Subsequently, one can only absorb a limited amount of nutrients. There are very few calories that are left as excess to be converted into fat deposits. Over time, weight gain is tamed.

A rare type of operation that may be performed is extensive gastric bypass. This is also known as biliopancreatic diversion. It is more complicated and takes a lot longer than the conventional bypass procedure. In the operation the lower part of the stomach is removed and the remainder is connected to the last intestinal part leaving out the first two parts. Due to the associated severe nutrient deficiency, it is not done routinely.

One needs to be familiar with the possible risks of these operations. One of the risks is the fact that the pouch can dilate over time and increase in size. The dilatation may even cause it to revert to its original size. The band may be eroded causing it to disintegrate together with the staples. This effectively reverses the procedure. In rare circumstances, stomach acids can leak and cause injury to internal organs.

Dumping syndrome is a condition that results from the rapid movement of food through the stomach. Whenever this happens, affected persons may experience a number of symptoms that include weakness, nausea, fainting, sweating and diarrhea. The symptoms are most likely to occur when one eats sugary foods (usually after 10 and 30 minutes after eating). Some people have also have late symptoms that occur about three hours after eating.

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