This procedure consists initially of the division of the stomach using titanium staples, which creates a small gastric pouch in the upper part that is joined to a section of the small intestine, forming a bridge for food, thus avoiding passage through the entire digestive tract and reducing the absorptive surface for it.
TWO MECHANISMS ARE AT WORK IN GASTRIC BYPASS:
Gastric reduction, since having a smaller stomach restricts the quantity of food the patient is able to ingest.
Reduction of the absorptive surface, since by "skipping" part of the small intestine, the amount of calories that can be absorbed is reduced.
This procedure can be performed by minimally invasive surgery (laparoscopy) or with the traditional "open" technique. It is the best option for patients with diabetes and metabolic syndrome.
ADVANTAGES OF THE GASTRIC BYPASS
Small incisions, minimal scarring, reduced hospitalization time and recovery period. A significant loss of weight has been observed, as well as substantial improvements in health and better control of glucose levels in patients with diabetes, as well as notable improvements in the control of other diseases such as hypertension, degenerative joint disease, hormonal disturbances and fertility, among others.
Some studies show that after one year of treatment the average patient has achieved the loss of between 70 and 90% of excessive weight.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT GASTRIC BYPASS
WHAT IS GASTRIC BYPASS?
Gastric Bypass is the "gold standard" for surgical treatment of obesity, which involves cutting out the greater part of the stomach and joining a segment of it to the small intestine for digestion of food.
HOW DOES GASTRIC BYPASS WORK?
It is considered a mixed procedure because it reduces the stomach's capacity for receiving food, and also prevents the absorption of certain foods which pass directly into the small intestine. This brings about weight loss and the control of diseases associated with obesity.
WHO ARE CANDIDATES FOR GASTRIC BYPASS?
Candidates for this procedure are those patients with a body mass index (BMI) of 35 kg/m2 with associated diseases, or those with 40 kg/m2 and no associated diseases.
HOW IS GASTRIC BYPASS CARRIED OUT?
The procedure is performed by minimally invasive surgery under general anesthesia. It consists of making six small incisions in the abdomen where working ports are placed for introduction of the instruments needed for the cutting and joining of the reduced stomach with the small intestine.
WHAT DOES FOLLOW-UP AFTER GASTRIC BYPASS SURGERY CONSIST OF?
All the specialists do checkups on a regular basis to monitor weight loss, medication and vitamin supplements. This follow-up continues until the patient has changed their eating habits and can continue with the care of their surgery on their own.
WILL MY MEDICAL PROBLEMS IMPROVE AFTER LAPAROSCOPIC GASTRIC BYPASS SURGERY?
It has been seen that some diseases associated with obesity diminish, or therapeutic control is enhanced after the bariatric procedure. Patients with hypertension show improvement or easier control in 60 to 80% of cases. In the case of diabetes mellitus improvement is seen in 70 to 90% of patients. In the case of alterations of cholesterol and triglycerides 60 to 80% of patients improve. There are also other significant improvements in asthma, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea and other diseases associated with obesity.
WHAT STUDIES MUST I HAVE BEFORE GASTRIC BYPASS SURGERY?
Preoperative laboratory and supplementary examinations that include:
Hematic Biometry to rule out abnormalities of the blood and clotting.
Blood chemistry to evaluate blood glucose (sugar levels) and kidney function, blood type and tests of liver function, as well as nutritional status.
Abdominal ultrasound to rule out vesicular lithiasis and stomach tumors, and for evaluation of the liver.
Chest x-ray to evaluate the area of the heart and lungs.
Upper GI Series to investigate intestinal transit.
Electrocardiogram for evaluation of the electrical activity of the heart.
Pulmonary function tests.
The objective of all these tests is to identify comorbid conditions, as well as to prevent and minimize risks, because your safety and tranquility is the first priority.
WHAT IS RAPID EMPTYING OR "DUMPING" SYNDROME?
It is a physiological reaction observed in some patients who have undergone gastric bypass. This syndrome is characterized by a bodily reaction, consisting of a feeling of dizziness, palpitations, profuse sweating, nausea, and sometimes abdominal pain or diarrhea after ingesting food and drinks with high sugar content. These symptoms can be prevented if one avoids foods containing a lot of sugar.
HOW LONG WILL I BE HOSPITALIZED FOR GASTRIC BYPASS?
Patients are admitted on the same day as the intervention, and are discharged three or four days after the surgical procedure.
WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES OF GASTRIC BYPASS?
Gastric bypass has been performed for 50 years and has gone through modifications so that today it is a safe and effective procedure. At present it is known to have better and more prolonged weight loss outcomes than the gastric band and the intragastric balloon, and when carried out by expert hands it has excellent results.