at St. Mary's Hospital, our bariatric surgeons perform the safest and most effective surgical weight loss procedures.

Open or Laparoscopic Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass

First introduced in the 1960s and much enhanced over recent years, this is the most frequently performed procedure in the United States for weight loss patients. At St. Mary's, the laparoscopic approach to the procedure is available, which is a minimally invasive technique that avoids a long abdominal incision and promotes faster healing. Not all patients are candidates for this method, but ask your surgeon.

Surgical operations for the control of severe obesity are based on one or both of two principles. The first is restriction, where the amount of calories or food ingested is controlled by limiting the space available to receive food. "Restrictive" procedures decrease or limit the intake of food, giving a feeling of "fullness" much more readily. The second principle is malabsorption, where the absorption of food is limited. "Malabsorptive" procedures cause incomplete "digestion" or "absorption" of food intake. Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass is a restrictive procedure with some malabsorption.

Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass is recognized by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for the treatment of severe obesity. This operation is performed using the laparoscopic or open technique and combines gastric restriction with slow gastric emptying and some malabsorption.

With the procedure, the stomach is divided to form a new, smaller pouch for food. The small bowel is rerouted to empty the new, smaller pouch. As food enters the pouch it quickly fills and causes one to have a sensation of fullness after eating only a small portion of food. The remainder of the stomach is present, but no longer acts as a reservoir for food.

The video below depicts laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery. The small bowel is reattached to the new stomach pouch and the food intake is restricted.

Click here to watch the video. (It may take a few moments for the video to load. Thank you for your patience.)

Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass is one of the most frequently performed weight loss procedures in the United States with 70 to 80 percent of excess weight loss after five years. Additionally, a high percentage of certain associated health conditions or comorbidities (sleep apnea, high blood pressure, diabetes and depression) are typically improved or resolved following surgery.

Click here to read more about benefits and side effects.


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