Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass
Roux-en-Y is the most common type of gastric bypass surgery.
The Roux-en-Y procedure
The Roux-en-Y procedure consists of making the top half of the stomach into the shape of a pouch with the use of staples or sutures. The stomach pouch is closed and attached to a Y-shaped section of the small intestine. The connection bypasses the rest of the rest of the digestive tract including stomach, duodenum, and part of the small intestine. The remainder of the stomach is transferred through a connection from the top portion of the small intestines through the rest of the small intestine, or jejunum.
Traditional vs. laparoscopic
The Roux-en-Y procedure can be done laparoscopically by making small incisions in the abdominal area with the guide of a small camera inserted in the abdominal cavity. The laparoscopic tool is used as a visual guide when inserted inside the abdomen. This procedure is less invasive, with less scarring and recovery time, and is faster than the traditional
Roux-en-Y-gastric bypass surgery. Traditionally, the surgeon performs open surgery with one extended incision in the abdomen. Since no part of the stomach is removed using Roux-en-Y, it is less complicated and more commonly used by surgeons than other bariatric surgeries.
How it works
With the stomach being resized smaller, there is less food intake. Because the stomach pouch is so small after surgery, you feel like you've eaten a large meal after only eating a few bites. The food is rerouted from the small stomach pouch directly to the small intestine with the creation of the Y-shaped section during surgery. The transfer of the food into the small intestine allows for absorption of nutrients.
As with all other major weight loss surgeries, risks can occur. The following complications are possible with Roux-en-Y surgery:
- Infection at the incision site
- Leakage at the connection from the stomach and small intestine, causing an infection called peritonitis
- Gallstones, anemia, or osteoporosis due to malnutrition
- Iron and vitamin B12 deficiency
- Nausea and vomiting after eating due to the narrowing of the stomach and intestine connection
- Ulcers or hernia
- Bypassed stomach enlargement, causing bloating and hiccups
Success in weight loss
Successful completion of Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery requires you to adhere to your doctor's strict dietary plans. On average, patients who have the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery lose 70% of their excess weight. You will eat less and quickly begin to shed the excess pounds because of less calorie consumption due to a smaller stomach size.
Get more information on bariatric surgery
For more information on weight loss surgery, see the links above left. To find a Roux-en-Y surgeon near you, use our bariatric surgeon locator.
Find out if you are a candidate for bariatric surgery.