Long-Term Complications of Gastric Bypass
During gastric bypass surgery, doctors decrease the size of the stomach and re-routes part of the intestine, which alters absorption of some nutrients. Patients who have the procedure often lose more than 100 pounds.
Despite the obvious benefits of the procedure, patients should be aware of the possible serious complications, since there's no fix-it and forget-it type of operation.
The common risks of gastric bypass include bleeding, infections, gallstones, gastritis, and vomiting.
Recently, researchers at two medical universities have discovered two additional serious long-term complications of the surgery.
Surgery researchers at Baylor College of Medicine found that two to three decades after gastric bypass, some patients experienced poor eyesight and night blindness due to a deficiency of vitamin A.
Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin, that means it comes with fatty acids that we eat in our diet, into the GI tract. If our body is not absorbing fatty acids as well, that's what helps us lose weight, we don't absorb the vitamin A as effectively.
Researchers at Indiana University have also discovered some bone health concerns connected with the surgery. They found blood markers for bone loss doubled in both men and women immediately following this surgery leaving patients at serious long-term risk for osteoporosis or bone loss.
Patients have to recognize that there's not a golden road here. They have to maintain their health and nutrition, their primary-care physicians have to look after them, as well as their surgery team.