Gastric bypass surgery divides the stomach into one small upper pouch and one larger lower section. A new link is made between the two parts of the stomach and the intestines. The link bypasses parts of the stomach where calories are absorbed.
Gastric bypass surgery dramatically reduces stomach capacity and changes the function of the stomach. Bypassing the intestines channels the patient to absorb fewer nutrients from their food intake. The smaller pouch allows patients to feel fuller faster.
Surgeons use different techniques to create the new link to the intestines. The most common gastric bypass surgery is called RNY, or Roux-En-Y Gastric Bypass.
Not everyone will qualify for gastric bypass surgery. There are guidelines that you must meet before a gastric bypass surgeon will consider you a candidate. The following is the list of criteria:
· body mass index of 30 or higher
· obesity related health problems
· must be at least 90 pounds overweight
· obese for over five years
· tried all other methods of weight loss and have documented proof
Gastric bypass surgery is performed under a general anesthetic and is typically executed using a surgical procedure called laparoscopy – sometimes referred to as “key-hole “surgery.
Once the stomach is inflated, surgeons make a number of small incisions in the abdomen, rather than the large single incision used in traditional surgery. The laparoscope, or viewing tube, is inserted to perform the procedure.
The surgeon creates the small upper pouch uses staples to seal the pouch off from the rest of the stomach. A link is formed between the pouch and the intestines using the Y shaped part of the intestines.
No internal parts of the stomach are removed however most of the stomach is now bypassed. Food will travel directly to the second part of the small intestine, also known as the jejunum and will absorb fewer calories. The majority of the small intestine, the duodenum, is bypassed. The lower part of the stomach continues to work normally for healthy digestion.
Average Duration of Gastric bypass surgery: 1-2 hours. If open surgery is executed instead of laparoscopic surgery, the operating time is reduced.