If you’re still thinking about bariatric surgery and looking for information, learning about the five goals of gastric bypass surgery can help guide your decision.
Dr. Amir Mehran and the team at University Bariatrics have helped many patients in the greater Los Angeles area achieve their weight loss goals.
They also have extensive experience performing gastric bypass procedures. Here, they share five goals achieved through this weight loss procedure.
During your gastric bypass, we separate the stomach into two parts, leaving a small part of the stomach attached to the esophagus (the tube carrying food and beverages into your stomach).
The upper part of the stomach, called the pouch, is about the size of an egg. The pouch quickly fills with little food, so the amount you can comfortably consume is naturally limited.
In addition to taking in significantly less food, you absorb fewer calories than you consume. That’s a unique feature of gastric bypass compared with other bariatric surgeries.
We accomplish this goal by cutting the small intestine into two pieces. The upper part of the intestine stays attached to the large, bottom part of your stomach. We take the lower part of the intestine and connect it to the small stomach pouch.
While this restores the flow of food through your stomach and into the intestine, the food bypasses the upper part and goes directly into the lower part of the small intestine.
Most of the food you eat is absorbed into your bloodstream in the upper part. Bypassing this part means you take in fewer calories. While that’s great for weight loss, it means you absorb fewer nutrients and need to be careful to prevent nutritional deficiencies after a gastric bypass.
Your stomach releases hormones that control hunger, satiety (the feeling of fullness), and metabolism. These hormones are produced in the part of your stomach that’s separated from the pouch. As a result, fewer hormones are released and hormone levels drop.
This process supports weight loss as you’re less hungry and feel satisfied with less food.
The hormonal changes that occur after a gastric bypass also affect the hormones controlling blood sugar. These changes quickly reverse Type 2 diabetes, often lowering your blood sugar within a few days to weeks after your surgery.
Nearly everyone with Type 2 diabetes returns to healthier blood sugar levels after gastric bypass, and 92% see their diabetes go into remission.
The first four achievements lead to the primary goal of gastric bypass surgery: significant weight loss and a return to optimal health. Most people lose 60%-77% of their excess weight in the year after their gastric bypass procedure.
However, everyone is different. Your long-term weight loss depends on your individual health and whether you stick with your diet and exercise plan.
Losing weight also improves many health problems caused by obesity. In addition to Type 2 diabetes, diseases like high blood pressure, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), high cholesterol, and heart disease improve or go into remission.
According to the American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery, OSA goes into remission for nearly everyone, and the other diseases go into remission for 60%-75% of patients.
If you have questions about gastric bypass or other weight loss surgeries, call University Bariatrics in Thousand Oaks or Northridge, California, or request an appointment online today.