Treatment Guides

Gastric Bypass Surgery

The gastric bypass, also known as the Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass, is a bariatric surgery that works by restricting the amount of food intake in addition to reducing absorptive capacity of food ingested.

quick details
  • Often prescribed for those with a BMI of over 40
  • May also be recommended for patients with a BMI of 30 and above, who suffer from conditions such as high blood pressure and/or type 2 diabetes
  • 85% of patients report sustained weight loss of 50% following gastric bypass surgery
  • Complications are reported in 5% of cases, while the procedure has a mortality rate of 0.1%
  • In 10-15% cases the procedure fails, and further bariatric surgery may be needed
  • Initial hospital stay: 1 to 4 days
  • Return to full fitness: generally within 3 to 5 weeks
  • 1 to 2 week pre-op diet to reduce fat around the stomach and liver after an initial screening process to determine whether suitable for bypass
  • Surgery: 1 to 4 hours
  • Constipation
  • Gallstones
  • Dumping syndrome (when certain foods pass too quickly through the gastric tract, leading to nausea and diarrhoea)
  • More serious complications can include internal infections, gastric leakage and blood clots, which occur in roughly 1% of cases

The cost of a gastric bypass depends on where you choose to have surgery and your individual needs. The pricing differential depends on many factors, such as cost of living, exchange rates, practicing costs or regulatory conditions, which may differ greatly from country to country.

  • Turkey

    € 5,000
  • Egypt

    € 5,050
  • Lithuania

    € 5,570

Gastric bypass surgery is usually recommended for any adult who has a BMI greater than 40, a BMI greater than 35 with comorbidities linked to obesity, such as type II diabetes, or a BMI greater than 30 with serious health problems

What is Body Mass Index (BMI) and how do you calculate yours?

This is the formula used to calculate the BMI: Weight in Kilograms / Height squared in Meters or weight (kg) ÷ height^2 (m^2)

Body Mass Index (BMI) is a globally accepted measure of body fat based on the relationship between height and weight.

Below the BMI weight categories:

  • below 18.5 = Underweight
  • 18.5 - 24.9 = Healthy
  • 25 - 29.9 = Overweight
  • 30 - 35 = Obese
  • above 35 = Extremely Obese

what is my BMI?

If patients urgently need to lose weight but cannot do so by alternative means, a gastric bypass may be recommended.

As the name suggests, this procedure diverts food and liquids as they pass through your bowels. By doing so, surgeons can drastically reduce the amount of food needed to create a sensation of "fullness", and weight loss tends to result.

How does a gastric bypass surgery work?

During the surgery itself (also known as a "Roux-en-Y gastric bypass"), doctors restrict the stomach using surgical staples, leaving a walnut-sized pouch.

The surgeon will then reconnect the patient's small intestine (duodenum) to this small pouch, bypassing the rest of the stomach and artificially limiting the capacity of the body to ingest food and drink.

There are different ways to access the stomach area to carry out the surgery. In the past, surgeons would generally make a broad incision across the patient's belly to access the stomach.

Modern techniques are less invasive, using tiny cameras called laparoscopes to provide a view of the stomach. With the help of the laparoscope, surgeons can then insert the tools they need to use into tiny incisions, which heal faster, resulting in shorter inpatient stays and less pain.

What should I expect?

When you choose to undergo a gastric bypass operation, expect a lengthy process of preparation before you reach the operating theatre. Medical staff will want to ensure that you are a suitable candidate for surgery, as bypasses are generally seen as a last resort.

Diet is also an important part of the process. Shortly before the operation, expect to be required to follow a diet that is designed to reduce fat deposits around the stomach and liver.

For a brief period following surgery, a purely liquid diet is essential. After that, patients need to gradually adapt their food intake to suit their restricted stomach capacity and recovery process. The stages in this diet will be clearly laid-out by gastric specialists and vary from patient to patient.

During the surgery itself, patients will be placed under general anaesthetic. Recovery times vary, but will be much shorter if a laparoscopic technique is used. In any case, the healing process usually lasts 3-5 weeks, and most patients leave hospital within 3 days.

What lifestyle changes are involved after surgery?

Gastric bypass procedures always lead to major lifestyle changes. This is most obvious in the food and drink that patients consume. They will need to radically both the amount that they eat and the nutrients they include with their meals.

Bypass patients tend to require higher quantities of vitamins and minerals, generally derived from fresh fruits and vegetables. They usually reduce their intake of sugars considerably, while maintaining a high protein intake of 60-100g per day.

The vast majority of patients also need to take multivitamins on a daily basis following their gastric bypass, including the full range of micronutrients, from Vitamin D to Iron and Calcium.

Hydration also becomes vital. Bypass procedures tend to reduce the body's capacity to absorb water, meaning that patients should make a point of rehydrating regularly, even if they do not feel thirsty.

Physicians may make additional recommendations, such as avoiding non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), which can inflame the stomach. And they will recommend a fitness regime in almost all cases. Although gastric bypasses radically restrict calorie intake, they must be combined with physical activity to maintain weight loss. Most patients change their lifestyles to include gym memberships or increased exercise as a result.

Qunomedical Health Managers have an all-round knowledge to find the right specialist for you. Learn more about Qunomedical.