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Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass

Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass

The laparoscopic gastric bypass is the commonest weight loss procedure performed worldwide.  It was first performed in the United States back in 1967.  It produces excellent weight loss of between 65% to 75% of excess weight and obviously has a long track record.  The operation involves creating a small pouch at the end of the oesophagus from the upper part of the stomach.  The rest of the stomach is disconnected and left inside.  A loop of small bowel, commonly 100cm in length, is then brought up and attached to the new stomach pouch.  The proximal small bowel containing the digestive juices is then joined to this loop of small bowel at about 100cm.  This means that when you eat, your food goes through the small stomach pouch and into the new loop of small bowel but does not meet the digestive juices for 100cm.

Gastric Bypass Procedure

The procedure is performed with keyhole (laparoscopic) surgery although it is technically the most difficult operation to perform.  Patients usually stay two to three days post-operatively before going home.  Typically you have very little, if any, appetite for four to five months and it is during this time that you have the most rapid weight loss.  It is important that you establish your health eating patterns in those first five months before your appetite returns.

Effective for Type 2 Diabetes Sufferers

The laparoscopic gastric bypass is particularly beneficial to Type 2 or non-insulin dependent diabetics.  There are increasing numbers of studies demonstrating that diabetics who have this operation performed have a very rapid improvement in their diabetic control well before they gain the benefits of weight loss.  This is felt to be due to the diversion of the food stream away from the first part of the small bowel, the duodenum and jejunum.  Studies, particularly from the United States, have demonstrated up to 87% resolution of Type 2 diabetes following laparoscopic gastric bypass procedures.  This procedure will always be my first recommendation for diabetic patients.

Other Gastric Bypass Solutions

The laparoscopic gastric bypass is also a good operation for patients who have had gastric band surgery and who are not happy with their band or are not doing well with their band.  It is possible to convert a gastric band patient to a laparoscopic gastric bypass as a one-stage procedure.  It is also possible to convert a gastric band to a laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy but this is best done as a two-stage procedure due to the high risk of a leak if the procedure is attempted as a one stage procedure.

As we have no access to the inside of the remainder of the stomach after a laparoscopic gastric bypass, it is important that the stomach is inspected by endoscope and biopsied prior to any surgery.  In addition, gastric bypass patients will have to remain on vitamin supplements in the long term due to deficiencies particularly in iron and calcium absorption.

If you are interested in discussing laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery, please contact my rooms or click here to complete the online consultation request form



  • Effective and reliable weight loss with average of 65 to 70% excess weight loss out to 10 years.
  • Performed laparoscopically, with fast recovery and short hospital stay
  • No foreign body
  • Intensive follow-up not required


  • Does involve alteration of gastro-intestinal tract and joining of bowel with small risk of leakage



Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass


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