Understanding Gastric Bypass Surgery Risks

Although it is considered a major operation, gastric bypass surgery with board-certified general surgeon Dr. Matthew St. Laurent is generally considered safe; however, a few risks are involved. By knowing what these risks are, Houston-area patients can better prepare to deal with them once the procedure has been completed.

What Are the Risks Associated with Gastric Bypass Surgery?

Many of the risks associated with gastric bypass surgery are the same as for any other operation. A few of the most common risks include the following:

  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Malignant hypothermia, which involves a rapidly rising body temperature
  • Blood clots
  • Excessive bleeding caused by blood that fails to clot properly

Other risks are more specific to gastric bypass surgery in general, including the following:

  • An infection in the stomach or small intestine
  • Stomach fluid leaking from the connection between the small intestine and the upper pouch
  • Stomach perforation

Post-operative Risks

Some risks may not be present during surgery but may present themselves at a later time. Individuals who undergo gastric bypass surgery have a higher-than-average risk of developing certain conditions such as the following:

  • Gallstones
  • Hernias
  • Low blood sugar
  • Ulcers

Dumping Syndrome

Shortly after surgery, you may experience a condition known as “dumping syndrome.” This occurs whenever food passes from the stomach to the small intestine too quickly, resulting in nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. This can usually be eliminated by doing the following:

  • Eating smaller portions
  • Cutting food into very small pieces
  • Chewing well before swallowing
  • Eliminating trigger foods from the diet
  • Minimizing foods and drinks with high concentrations of simple sugar
  • Eating several smaller meals throughout the day

To read our procedure guide, click here.

The risks associated with gastric bypass surgery are relatively mild when you consider the effects obesity could have on your health. If you’re in the Houston area, contact Dr. Matthew St. Laurent at 281-301-1404 to see if gastric bypass surgery might be right for you.

Dr. Matthew St. Laurent

Northwest Endosurgical

At Northwest Endosurgical in Houston, Texas, Dr. Matthew St. Laurent helps patients achieve dramatic weight loss and improved health through bariatric surgery. Dr. St. Laurent is one of the most experienced bariatric surgeons in greater Houston, and he is affiliated with several professional organizations, including:

  • The American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery
  • The American College of Surgeons
  • The Society of American Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Surgeons
  • The Obesity Action Coalition
  • The American Medical Association
  • The Texas Medical Association
  • The International Federation for the Surgery of Obesity and Metabolic Disorders (IFSO)

To schedule a consultation, book online or give us a call at (281) 921-1890.

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