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Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass—Laparoscopic Surgery
What is it? Overview Usage Side Effects and Warnings

What is Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass—Laparoscopic Surgery?

Roux-en-Y gastric bypass is a surgery for obesity . It changes the stomach and small intestine to cause weight loss by:

  • Restricting food intake—creates a small pouch to serve as the stomach, so you cannot eat as much
  • Making the body unable to absorb as many calories from the food—bypasses the first part of the small intestine, where many of the calories from food are usually absorbed

Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass
Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass
© 2009 Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

The surgery treats severe obesity. Doctors use a calculation called body mass index ( BMI ) to determine how overweight or obese you are. A normal BMI is 18.5-25.

Roux-en-Y gastric bypass is a weight loss option for people with:

  • BMI greater than 40
  • BMI 35-39.9 and a life-threatening condition, such as heart disease or diabetes
  • BMI 35-39.9 with severe physical limitations that affect employment, mobility, and family life

The success of gastric bypass surgery depends on your commitment to lifelong health habits. If lifestyle changes are made and maintained, the benefits of bariatric surgery include:

  • Long-term weight reduction
  • Improvement in many obesity-related conditions (eg, glucose intolerance, diabetes , sleep apnea, high blood pressure , and high...

Possible Complications

If you are planning to have Roux-en-Y gastric bypass, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:

  • Nutritional deficiencies—You will need to take vitamins to get adequate amounts of vitamin B12 , iron , and calcium .
  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Blood clots
  • Hernia formation
  • Bowel obstruction
  • Breakdown of the staples, allowing leakage of stomach juices into the abdomen
  • Diarrhea, abdominal cramping, and vomiting
  • Dumping syndrome—This occurs after eating sweets, when food moves too quickly through the small intestine causing sweating, fatigue, lightheadedness, cramping, and diarrhea .
  • Complications of general anesthesia
  • Death—This occurs in less than 1% of patients.

Factors that...