roux-en-y gastric bypass (RYGB)

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What Is Gastric Bypass Surgery?

Gastric bypass surgery is also called Roux-en-Y gastric bypass or RYGB (the medical abbreviation) and is performed to help obese individuals lose weight when traditional diet and exercise have been unsuccessful.

Gastric bypass surgery alters the stomach size and re-routes the digestive system. The surgeon divides the stomach into two sections making the top section much smaller. Next, a section of the small intestine is re-routed and connected to the newly formed pouch. The food that is ingested will now travel from the pouch directly into this portion of the small intestine “bypassing” the rest of the digestive system and absorbing fewer calories which results in significant weight loss.

Gastric Bypass Is The Gold Standard

Illustration: How Does Gastric Bypass Work?

What Is A Mini Gastric Bypass?

A mini gastric bypass is performed very similarly to traditional bypass surgery. The main difference between the two surgeries is that the technique used in the mini involves bypassing a larger portion of the small intestine with less intestinal rerouting. The risk of complications is diminished with a mini bypass because the procedure involves fewer steps.

Why Consider Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass?

Gastric bypass surgery helps obese patients lose weight and lessen the risks associated with weight-related and life-threatening health problems, such as:

  • High blood pressure;
  • Type 2 diabetes;
  • Heart disease;
  • High or low cholesterol issues;
  • Stroke;
  • Sleep apnea;
  • Gallbladder disease;
  • Osteoarthritis (cartilage breaks down in the joints);
  • Cancer;
  • Decreased quality of life;
  • Depression & anxiety;
  • Chronic body pain and decreased physical functioning ability.

Gastric Bypass Benefits: Patient’s Testimonial

Illustration: Weight Loss After Gastric Bypass Surgery

How Much Weight Can I Lose with Gastric Bypass?

Typically, patients lose between 50-60% of their excess weight the first year after surgery. To calculate excess weight, subtract ideal weight or goal weight from current weight.

A patient who weighs 350 pounds with a goal weight of 150 pounds has 200 pounds of excess weight: 350 – 150 = 200. After Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery, this patient will typically lose between 100 and 120 pounds in the first 12 months: 200 x 50-60% = 100-120.

Patients who continue to follow their dietary plan and new lifestyle choices should reach their final goal in about 24 months.

Who Is a Candidate for Gastric Bypass?

The basic criteria for gastric bypass surgery is:

  • A body mass index (BMI) of 40+
  • A BMI of 35+ and you suffer from serious weight-related health issues, such as type high blood pressure, 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, etc.
  • Sometimes patients with lower BMI numbers (30-34) can qualify if they are experiencing serious health issues related to their weight.

In addition to the physical qualifications for Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery, patients must be dedicated and committed to making permanent lifestyle changes. Patients may also be required to participate in long-term follow-up care that may include overseeing nutrition, exercise, and lifestyle as well as monitoring medical conditions.

How Much Does Gastric Bypass Cost?

At IBI Healthcare Institute, we offer a self-pay, all-inclusive price. In some cases, your exact bypass surgery cost could be reduced based on insurance and health status, use of additional resources, and so on. We offer financing options for qualified patients.

The cost not only includes the price of the procedure but more importantly, the skill and expertise of the specialist or healthcare professional that is performing it.

Gastric Bypass FAQs

When Will I Start Seeing Results from Gastric Bypass?

After your RYGB surgery, you will begin to lose weight very quickly because of the way the surgery alters the digestive system. The three reasons gastric bypass helps patients lose weight are:

  1. The stomach has been made smaller, restricting the amount of food that can be consumed at one time.
  2. The digestive system has been altered to prevent it from absorbing all of the calories that were ingested contributing to significant weight loss.
  3. During the surgery, the reduction of the stomach also reduced the production of ghrelin. Ghrelin is the hormone that creates hunger pangs and tells us we are hungry. Patients who have had bypass surgery will feel “full” longer.

How Long Will the Results from Gastric Bypass Last?

Gastric bypass surgery, like other weight-loss surgeries, has the potential to yield life-long results. The surgery is just one component of the weight loss process and is used as a tool that will help jumpstart your new lifestyle. The keys to continued weight loss success and maintenance are mainly held by the patient. Dedication and commitment to following dietary restrictions, an exercise program, and implementing lifestyle changes are what is going to determine long-term success.

Gastric Bypass Diet Plan

These guidelines are to help you choose, prepare and eat foods before and after gastric bypass surgery.

Download pdf

Are There Any Risks Associated with Gastric Bypass?

As with any surgical procedure, gastric bypass has associated risks.

Although rare, some possible risks include:

  • Risks related to the anesthesia used during surgery;
  • Anastomotic leak;
  • Acid reflux;
  • Chronic nausea and vomiting;
  • Dilation of esophagus;
  • Infection;
  • Stomach obstruction;
  • New food sensitivities.

Long term risks can include:

  • Low blood sugar;
  • Dumping syndrome, a condition that can lead to symptoms like nausea and dizziness;
  • Ulcers;
  • Malnutrition;
  • Vomiting;
  • Bowel obstruction.

Is Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass Reversible?

Gastric bypass surgery is reversible; however, it can cause rare but serious complications. The procedure for reversal is risky.

How Do I Know if Gastric Bypass is Right for Me?

The best way to determine if gastric bypass surgery is the fit for your weight loss needs is through a consultation with an expert in bariatric surgery and weight loss. The surgeon will know which procedure is right for you. For instance, when comparing RYGB vs sleeve gastrectomy, how do you know which will offer the most weight loss potential? Gastric bypass surgery limits the amount of food you can eat and also how many calories can be absorbed by your body while sleeve gastrectomy (gastric sleeve) only restricts the amount of food you can eat. Gastric bypass (RYGB) surgery offers greater potential to lose weight fast but it also has a higher risk profile than gastric sleeve.

If you are considering gastric bypass surgery to help you with weight loss, contact us today. IBI Healthcare Institute is here to help you navigate through the entire weight loss process, including choosing the procedure best for you, supporting you through the process, and your continued weight loss journey. Contact us today and take that vital first step towards a healthier you!


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