Revision bariatric surgery may become necessary for a variety of reasons. Some patients fail to lose their desired amount of weight, or they regain weight. Others fail to resolve co-morbidities or suffer from surgical complications that affect their health.
If you think that you might require revision bariatric surgery, it is important that you visit a well-qualified bariatric surgeon to guide you through the revision surgery process. Revision bariatric surgery is often riskier than the original procedure, because it usually takes longer, may require open incisions and may cause greater blood loss. Revision weight loss surgery also has an increased risk of leaks and infection. Due to these increased risks, not all weight loss surgeons perform revision procedures. And, many of the ones that do, do not have much experience with revision bariatric surgery.
That is why it is crucial to choose a bariatric surgeon with extensive experience in revision weight loss surgery, such as Dr. Alberto Aceves of Mexicali Bariatric Center. Dr. Aceves is highly seasoned in revision weight loss surgery, and he takes every precaution available to minimize revision surgery risks.
In addition, Dr. Aceves carefully evaluates each patient’s medical and surgical history as well as the reason that the initial bariatric surgery failed to help the person lose weight or resolve co-morbidities. That way, he can recommend one of the following types of revision bariatric surgery that will best fit the patient’s needs.
Converting Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy
About 80 percent of those who undergo vertical sleeve gastrectomy (VSG) successfully lose excess weight. However, the other 20 percent of VSG patients fail to do so, resulting in what is called “vertical sleeve gastrectomy failure.” This can be corrected by converting the initial VSG to one of the following options:
• Gastric re-sleeving (i.e., stapling the stretched stomach)
• Duodenal switch surgery (i.e., leaving the sleeve intact and rerouting a lengthy part of the small intestine, producing two distinct pathways and one shared channel)
• Gastric bypass surgery (i.e., making a small pouch and connecting it directly to the middle section of the small intestine, bypassing the rest of the stomach and the upper section of the small intestine)
Converting Lap Band to Gastric Sleeve or Gastric Bypass
The most common type of revision surgery that Dr. Aceves performs is conversion of Lap Band to either gastric sleeve or gastric bypass. He performs this type of revision bariatric surgery at least once a week. Typically, patients require this type of revision weight loss surgery due to Lap Band slippage, lack of weight loss and weight regain.
Converting Vertical Banded Gastroplasty (VBG)
Those who have undergone vertical banded gastroplasty (VBG), or any other type of “stomach stapling” bariatric surgery, typically seek revision bariatric surgery because they either regained the weight they lost or they developed maladaptive eating habits. In addition, metabolic issues may hinder the patient from losing weight with VBG. Depending on the reason that the patient requires revision bariatric surgery, Dr. Aceves may recommend one of the following revision weight loss surgery procedures:
• Convert VBG to gastric bypass (for improved weight loss)
• Convert VBG to vertical sleeve gastrectomy if medically appropriate, depending which surgical approach was taken in your original VBG procedure (for improved weight loss)
• Convert VBG to duodenal switch surgery if medically appropriate, depending which surgical approach was taken in your original VBG procedure (for improved weight loss)