Gastric Bypass Side Effects
How to Deal with Gastric Bypass Side Effects
Gastric bypass surgery is a procedure carried out as a last resort weight loss measure when all other methods have failed. The surgery involves reducing the size of the stomach by tying a plastic band or stapling. The stomach is then connected directly with the center of the small intestines, skipping the region where absorption takes place. In extreme cases connection is directly to the large intestines. The reduced size of the stomach means one eats less. Bypassing the area where absorption takes place means that most food is not assimilated. This has the effect reducing excess weight.
Like any other surgery gastric bypass side effects can be experienced once the operation is over. Most of them are temporary and the inconvenience and discomfort that they cause is negligible when you consider the benefits of the surgery. However they need to be addressed as they can endanger one’s health if not dealt with appropriately.
Nutritional deficiency is one of the common gastric bypass side effects. Since the part of the small intestine involved in absorption is bypassed, the quantity of nutrients received by the body is greatly reduced. This can lead to nutritional disorders such as anemia and osteoporosis. Hair loss can also occur as a result of lack of protein in the diet. This can be rectified by use of vitamin and mineral supplements.
Dumping syndrome is one of the most prevalent gastric bypass side effects. This occurs when food passes through the stomach too rapidly and gets to the intestines before much digestion has taken place. It is mainly caused by not chewing food properly, eating too quickly and eating too much carbohydrate immediately after surgery. The symptoms include weakness, dizziness, nausea and rapid heartbeat. This is controlled by following a new diet and eating habits as prescribed by your doctor.
Flatulence - Also referred to as gas trouble, this is also a common side effect of gastric bypass surgery. As food bypasses the small intestine where absorption takes place, the large intestine is unable to digest food, thus producing a lot of gas. Treatment focuses on diet changes.
Change in bowel movements - Of all the gastric bypass side effects, this one probably causes the most discomfort. The surgery results in changes in the digestion process and to add to that, changes in diet are inevitable after the surgery. This will definitely affect bowel movements. Constipation or difficulty passing stool is one effect. This is controlled by increasing water intake and taking fiber supplements. Another effect is diarrhea or loose stool and this is caused by diet. Always ensure you follow the recommended diet after the surgery.
Dehydration - This is a condition that results in an abnormal reduction of body fluids. It is usally the result of other side effects such as vomiting and diarrhea. The remedy for this is to drink lots of water or other liquids. Make sure that you consume at least 2 liters per day.
There are always risks associated with any surgery and gastric bypass surgery is no exception. It is important to discuss all surgery options and have sufficient knowledge concerning possible gastric bypass side effects with your doctor prior to the surgery.
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