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Bariatric Surgery Revision for Failure to Lose Weight

By Jacqueline Osuna, MD on December 05, 2017

Measuring your stomachWeight loss surgery at our Tijuana and Guadalajara practice has changed many people's lives for the better. While many patients experience dramatic weight loss thanks to bariatric surgery, one has to acknowledge that it's possible for the procedure to fail in a number of ways. Sometimes patients experience serious complications such as infection, tearing, or leaking of the stomach. These issues require immediate medical attention and a possible revision bariatric surgery to address health problems that may be life threatening.

Another way that bariatric surgery can fail is by not functioning optimally. By this we mean that patients do not lose enough wait after they've undergone a weight loss procedure. This can take a number of different forms, but regardless what happens, bariatric surgeons must consider ways to promote weight loss following the initial procedure.

Not Losing Enough Weight

One form of failing to lose weight is when patients only lose a little bit of weight. Many bariatric surgery patients experience around 50 ponds of weight loss by the end of six months and 100+ pounds of weight loss by the end of a year.

Numbers can vary depending on the procedure and the starting weight of the patient, but most patients should lose 50 percent of their excess weight or more by the end of the first year after surgery; the number is around 70 percent for gastric bypass patients. The failure to even reach the 50 percent threshold is a sign that the initial surgery did not achieve the desired results.

Regaining the Weight You Lost

After the first year, bariatric surgery patients will regain a little bit of the weight they've lost. This is a sign of the body adjusting to the changes that occurred during surgery, and it's completely natural. Patients should still be considerably lighter than they were before surgery, and much healthier given their increased physical activity and improved diet.

Some patients will experience major weight gain after bariatric surgery, however. While they may still be lighter than they were before surgery, the reduced amount of weight loss may be relatively insignificant in terms of improving the patient's overall health and wellness.

What Is Bariatric Surgery Revision?

Also known as revision bariatric surgery, this is a corrective procedure that adjusts the initial bariatric surgery in order to promote more weight loss and improve the patient's overall health in the process.

How Bariatric Surgery Revision Works

There are different ways that a bariatric surgery revision may be performed, though they tend to come down to two options:

  • Adjusting the Existing Surgery – In the case of gastric banding that fails, the solution may involve a simple adjustment of the band. This will shrink the stomach pouch even more, helping reduce caloric consumption.

  • Changing the Initial Surgery Into a New One – For other revision procedures, the best option may involve changing the surgery into a more advanced type of weight loss procedure. A gastric band patient may instead undergo a sleeve gastrectomy or a gastric bypass, for instance. Gastric bypass patients may undergo a duodenal switch as part of their revision. This will lead to increased and improved weight loss results that last.

During the consultation process, we can determine the ideal approach to revision bariatric surgery given your condition and your needs.

Learn More About Bariatric Surgery

For more information about improving your health through weight loss surgery and what options may be available to you, be sure to contact an experienced bariatric surgeon. We will work closely with you to create a custom weight loss solution that's right for your needs.

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