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Gastric Bypass Surgery

  • Gastric Bypass Surgery in Montgomery County

    Dramatic weight loss experienced after a gastric bypass can improve your quality of life, boost your attitude, and give you new hope for the future. Einstein Healthcare Network offers gastric bypass surgery in Montgomery County at its hospitals in Elkins Park and East Norriton.

    One of the biggest advances in gastric bypass surgery is the technique used by Einstein Bariatrics - the laparoscopic approach.

    This minimally invasive technique offers several advantages over traditional surgery:

    • Small incisions. Generally only five tiny incisions are necessary. Four of these cuts are about 1/4" long and one is 1" long. Smaller incisions result in less chance of infection. Also, your risk of developing a hernia is less than one percent.
    • Fast. Average operating room time is about one hour. Less time in the operating room means less anesthesia and anesthesia-related complications.
    • Minimal pain. Directly after surgery you will be sore for a few hours. You may need Tylenol with Codeine the day after surgery. Many patients do not require any medications for pain by the time they go home.
    • Faster recovery. If you are like most patients, you will be walking the day of surgery. Your discomfort is easily controlled, and you are at lower risk for developing blood clots, pneumonia or other complications that can result from prolonged immobility.
    • Quick return to work. You can likely return to work within a week.

    Our program was the first in the region to use the da Vinci Surgical System for robotic assistance during a gastric bypass procedure. Advantages of robotic surgery include:

    • Magnified views and better control to navigate instruments through tiny incisions.
    • Less invasive access to the surgical site.
    • Faster healing time with decreased scarring and blood loss for minimal pain.

    The gastric bypass operation

    During a gastric bypass operation, the stomach is cut to create a small pouch. The remaining stomach and first one to two feet of small intestine are then surgically bypassed.

    The unused stomach remains in your body without any long-term problems. In fact, the unused stomach produces important enzymes.

    One byproduct of the procedure is less absorption of food nutrients. Lifelong follow-up with a bariatric program is mandatory to monitor and avoid complications. Your Einstein nutritionist will recommend specific supplements to prevent long-term problems.

    Changes that occur after gastric bypass surgery

    Gastric bypass surgery can cause changes in behavior. Patients often say that they lose their old food cravings and are less hungry in general. Rarely do people feel deprived of food.

    These behavioral changes are partially due to altered hormones and neural signals in your gastrointestinal (GI) tract that communicate with hunger centers in you brain.

    Meanwhile, the small stomach pouch restricts how much food you can consume, and you feel full faster.

    Weight loss after the gastric bypass may also be brought on by the dumping syndrome. Dumping syndrome causes intolerance to eating sweets. Dumping may result in lightheadedness, flushing, heart palpitations, diarrhea and other symptoms. Some patients lose some or all of their sweet sensitivity over time.

    Significant improvements to health and lifestyle

    Numerous studies have shown the gastric bypass results in long-term weight loss. Average weight loss usually peaks at 18 to 24 months after surgery, but half of all the weight loss often occurs in the first six months.

    The gastric bypass can improve or cure diabetes, hypertension, arthritis, venous stasis disease, certain types of headaches, heartburn, sleep apnea and many other disorders.

    Most importantly, the gastric bypass has demonstrated significant improvements in quality of health and life expectancy.

    Be aware, there are significant risks to any major operation. A discussion with your surgeon is important in understanding potential dangers presented by gastric bypass surgery.

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