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What happens during gastric bypass?

  • A gastric bypass is performed under general anaesthetic and usually takes between two and four hours
  • Your surgeon will usually use laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery
  • They will make several small cuts on your abdomen
  • Your surgeon will place surgical instruments along with a telescope inside your abdomen to perform the operation
  • Your surgeon will create a tunnel behind your stomach
  • They will pass a stapling device through the tunnel and then staple your stomach to create a smaller stomach pouch
  • They will divide your small bowel below your stomach and bring up the lower end and attach it to your new stomach pouch
  • The contents of your new stomach pouch will now bypass the rest of your stomach and the first part of your small bowel.

Going home after gastric bypass

  • You should be able to go home the day after your procedure
  • Your stomach may be sore and you may experience nausea or vomiting
  • These symptoms should ease quickly
  • You will start with a liquid-only diet, progressing to soft food and then to solid food
  • Due to nutritional deficiencies created by gastric bypass you may need dietary supplements for the rest of your life
  • Some patients experience “dumping syndrome” if they eat the wrong foods; resulting in nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea
  • You should be able to return to work after two to four weeks depending on the extent of surgery and your type of work
  • Many patients experience rapid weight loss in the first 6-9 months following gastric bypass
  • It is important that you maintain any diet or exercise programme prescribed in order to continue this progress.

What complications can happen?

General complications of any surgical procedure may include:

  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Infection of the surgical site (wound)
  • Unsightly scarring
  • Developing a hernia in the scar
  • Blood clots (deep vein thrombosis)

Specific complications of gastric bypass may include:

  • Damage to internal organs
  • Surgical emphysema
  • Developing a hernia near one of the cuts
  • Pouch stenosis
  • Staple-line bleeding
  • Anastomotic leak
  • Developing a hernia inside the abdomen
  • Change in bowel habit or diarrhoea
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Anastomotic ulcer
  • Developing gallstones

The decision to have gastric bypass surgery must be considered very carefully. Our experienced consultants and bariatrics nurses can give you all the information you need.

Find your nearest hospital that provides this treatment
Bournemouth  

67 Lansdowne Road, Bournemouth, BH1 1RW

01202 291866
Overall rating View rating
Brentwood  

Shenfield Road, Brentwood, CM15 8EH

01277 695695
Overall rating Good
Bristol  

3 Clifton Hill, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 1BN

0117 906 4870
Overall rating Good
Cardiff and Vale  

Cardiff Bay Hospital, Dunleavey Drive, Cardiff, CF11 0SN

02920 836700
Chester  

Wrexham Road, Chester, CH4 7QP

01244 680 444
Overall rating Good
Derby  

Rykneld Road, Derby, DE23 4SN

01332 540100
Overall rating Good
Guildford  

Stirling Road, Guildford, GU2 7RF

Self Pay Enquiries 0300 131 1401
Switchboard 01483 555800
Overall rating Good
Leeds  

2 Leighton Street, Leeds, LS1 3EB

01133 882 067
Overall rating Outstanding
Leicester  

Scraptoft Lane, Leicester, LE5 1HY

Enquiries 0300 1311416
Overall rating Good
Newcastle upon Tyne  

Clayton Road, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, NE2 1JP

0191 281 6131
Overall rating Good
North Staffordshire  

Clayton Road, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 4DB

01782 625431
Overall rating Good
Oxford  

Beech Road, Headington, Oxford, OX3 7RP

01865 307777
Overall rating Good
Shrewsbury  

Longden Road, Shrewsbury, SY3 9DP

01743 282628
Overall rating Good
Taunton  

Staplegrove Elm, Taunton, TA2 6AN

01823 286991
Overall rating Good
Tunbridge Wells  

Kingswood Road, Tunbridge Wells, TN2 4UL

01892 531111
Overall rating Good
Wessex  

Winchester Road, Chandlers Ford, Eastleigh, SO53 2DW

02380 266 377
Overall rating Good
Wolverhampton  

Wood Road, Tettenhall, Wolverhampton, WV6 8LE

01902 754 177
Overall rating Good

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