Complications of Gastric Bypass - Understand the Risks of Gastric Bypass Surgery

Visions of a slimmer body are enticing, but you must understand the possible complications of gastric bypass before you sign up for weight loss surgery.


The most common type of gastric bypass surgery is the Roux-en-Y procedure (RNY).

The surgeon closes off the main part of the stomach with a row of staples, leaving a much smaller pouch stomach at the top. Next, the surgical team make a route out of the pouch with part of the small intestine. After surgery, food bypasses not only your previous large stomach but also a length of intestine. This means that your body can't absorb nearly as many calories as before. The exact size of your new stomach is worked out to make sure that you'll be able to eat the right amount of food to maintain a lower, healthier body weight.

After the operation, eating too much sugary food will make you feel unwell because it triggers your body into producing too much insulin. This helps to deter you from slipping back into unhealthy eating habits. Following a healthy eating plan and exercising are essential to help you get the most benefit from weight loss surgery.

According to the British Obesity Surgery Patients Association, most patients can shed between 66% to 75% of their extra weight over the two years after surgery. This is a better result than you could expect with a gastric lap band procedure, but you're only likely to be recommended for gastric bypass surgery if you have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of more than 50.

Gastric bypass has become more common than ever before with hundreds of procedures being performed every day worldwide. It's a safe operation, given the many medical advances, technology and the ability to perform laparascopic gastric bypass or mini gastric bypass, but even so, as with all surgery, there is some risk involved.

Complications of Gastric Bypass Surgery

Gastric bypass - a solution for obesity
IstockĀ© Mikhail Kokhanchikov

The risks of weight loss surgery only affect a small percentage of patients who undergo bariatric surgery, and depend on several factors, such as the quality of the patient's health going into the surgery, the competency of the medical staff, etc. What are the most common complications?

  • Infection is the most commonly known risk of gastric bypass with most infections being in the stomach or wound sites. Lung infection following surgery is also a known risk.
  • Leak in the join between the intestine and the stomach is another possible complication. Such a leak would need to be repaired surgically almost immediately.
  • Vomiting is one of the most common complications of gastric bypass and often occurs immediately after the surgery, sometimes as a reaction to the anaesthesia or other medications administered during and after the operation. To avoid this you may be given medication to prevent vomiting.
  • Very rarely, in less than 2% of cases, a patient dies following gastric bypass surgery. Underlying health issues related to excessive overweight are often a contributing factor.
Although gastric bypass can be a highly successful operation, not everyone who has the operation achieves their full weight loss goal. You might see gastric bypass as a sure-fire way to get thin and think it will be an easy way to getting the body that you want, but the reality is that unless you stick to a suitable, healthy diet after gastric bypass and take enough regular exercise into the longterm, this surgery may not be the end-all that you're hoping for. Learn more about the bariatric surgery risks.

Weight loss surgery can give you the body that you dream of, improved mobility and a better quality of life - if you're willing to do the work that goes along with it. Understanding the complications of gastric bypass as well as the benefits will help you to make an informed decision before you go ahead.

Go from Complications of Gastric Bypass to Beat Menopause Weight Gain.

Bookmark and Share

Get the Healthy Eating Habit and Lose Weight For Ever
We hate spam and will never give away or sell your email address

Before You Exercise...

Make sure you check our information on Warm Ups and Safe Exercise.

Find out about the cost of gastric bypass and information about free gastric bypass surgery.


Beat-menopause-weight-gain.com does not offer medical advice. Please consult your physician before making any changes to your usual lifestyle.
View our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape

Beat Menopause Weight Gain - Feel Good in Your Body! - All Rights Reserved - Copyright© 2008-2012