Gastric Bypass Surgery

by Cassandra Merkling
(last updated July 31, 2009)

Basically, gastric bypass surgery is a procedure in which someone who is severely obese (we are talking about a hundred pounds or more) and cannot get results through diet and exercise alone gets a somewhat lower part of their intestine attached to a higher part of their stomach (after the stomach has been sewn up into sections).

When a gastric bypass surgery is carried out, the doctor will use a laparoscope, a type of tiny video camera, as well as a television monitor to know what he or she is doing inside the patient's body. There will be four to six incisions made in the abdomen and the laparoscope will be passed through one of these incisions. All the work will be done through the other incisions.

The factors for getting gastric bypass surgery are a little stricter than some would like. For instance, although a person has to be at least 100 pounds overweight to have this procedure done, he can have problems in the surgery if he is over three hundred fifty pounds. The prospective patient must also have plenty of determination to exercise and eat right, as this procedure requires such, both before and after surgery.

At first, a patient will lose ten to twenty pounds every month after the operation. Eventually, the weight loss that the patient experiences will be slowed. Most of the weight she will lose with gastric bypass surgery will be within the first little while of having had the surgery, so it is important that the patient sticks to the dietary guidelines given to her by the doctor and/or dietitian so she can make the most of her optimal weight loss period. The patient may find that she has lost half the weight she wants to between the first year or two after the surgery. However, sometimes patients will find that they are regaining their weight after the first couple of years because their stomachs are stretched out again, so it is important that the patient takes the opportunity to train herself to eat less while the effects of the surgery are still working for her.

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