Gastric bypass surgery is widely considered to be the “gold standard” when it comes to medical weight loss procedures. It is now the second most common type of bariatric surgery performed in the United States, and in addition to helping patients shed unwanted pounds, gastric bypass can also help to improve chronic conditions like Type 2 Diabetes, hypertension (high blood pressure), sleep apnea, and high cholesterol.
With a gastric bypass, also known as Roux-en-Y gastric bypass, your bariatric surgeon uses laparoscopic tools through small incisions in the abdomen to create a small pouch about the size of an egg out of your stomach. They then reroute your small bowel to the new small pouch bypassing a large portion of your stomach and some of the small intestines.
The remaining large portion of your stomach and the duodenum is ‘bypassed’, however, the excluded stomach tissue is not removed, ensuring that essential digestive juices, enzymes and hormones continue to be produced and absorbed.
Gastric bypass works by restricting the amount of food you can eat, and altering the way in which fat and calories are absorbed by your body.
The small, egg-sized stomach pouch fills up quickly when you eat, which helps you feel satisfied on a fraction of the food that you consumed prior to the procedure. As a result, you take in fewer calories, leading to a caloric deficit and subsequent weight loss.
Because a portion of the small intestine is bypassed during the procedure, your body will absorb fewer nutrients from the food you eat – this also helps to promote weight loss and long-term maintenance of a healthy body mass index (BMI).
Current guidelines from the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery state that gastric bypass may be an option for patients who either have a BMI of 40 or greater, or have a BMI over 35 and suffer from one or more serious, obesity-related conditions such as:
In order to qualify for gastric bypass, you may need to show that your efforts to achieve and maintain a healthy BMI through lifestyle changes (diet and/or exercise) have been unsuccessful.
Gastric bypass is a major, life-changing procedure that has been shown to help obese patients shed unwanted body fat and reduce weight-related medical complications. Like all weight-loss surgeries, there are pros and cons associated with gastric bypass.
Advantages of gastric bypass include:
Disadvantages can include:
Here at the Beltline Health, we specialize in minimally-invasive laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery using advanced robot-assisted surgical tools designed to promote faster healing, leave fewer scars, and help you achieve your weight loss goals. To learn more about our full range of bariatric services, contact us today.
*Results may vary.