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Increasingly Popular Mini-Gastric Bypass Procedure Linked To Increased Risk Of Diarrhea, Other Stomach Problems: Study

After comparing results of two different types of gastric bypass, including roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) one one-anastomosis gastric bypass (OAGB), researchers indicate that both procedures result in similar weight loss, but those who undergo one-anastomosis gastric bypass may be more likely to experience some side effects and complications.

In a study published this month in the medical journal The Lancet, French researchers report that some patients experienced higher rates of diarrhea and other complications after one-anastomosis gastric bypass surgery.

Researchers conducted a randomized trial in nine obesity centers in France, including 253 patients between the ages of 18 and 65 years old, who were randomly assigned to receive one of two types of gastric bypass surgeries. Patients either received one-anastomosis gastric bypass, also referred to as a “mini-gastric bypass,” or they received the roux-en-Y gastric bypass.

Patients had a body-mass index of 40 or higher or 35 or higher, but also had at least one other condition, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, obstructive sleep apnea, high cholesterol, or arthritis.

On average, patients lost similar amounts of weight in both groups. In the mini-gastric bypass group, patients lost 88% of their weight. In the roux-en-Y gastric bypass group, patients lost 86% of their weight.

However, the mini-gastric bypass group experienced nearly twice as many adverse events; 42 compared to 24 in the roux-en-Y gastric bypass group. Those included higher rates of diarrhea, nutritional deficiencies, and steatorrhea, which is a condition which causes excess fat to be released in the feces.

Researchers indicate the number and type of side effects indicate patients who undergo mini-gastric bypass surgery may experience problems with malabsorption of their food.

Other studies have also indicated some weight loss surgeries result in increased digestive tract problems, indigestion, and food intolerances. It may be a more common side effect of weight loss surgery.

A 2014 study indicated patients who underwent roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery also had serious side effects. The roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery helped patients lose more weight than other types of bariatric surgery, but the patients faced higher rates of complications, including death.

Mini-gastric bypass and roux-en-Y gastric bypass are both types of laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery that reduce the size of the stomach. However, during the roux-en-Y gastric bypass the stomach is cut in two places and reattached to the large intestine. During mini-gastric bypass the stomach is cut in one place and reattached to the large intestine.

Mini-gastric bypass has become increasing popular in recent years because it has a shorter surgery time, less surgical re-routing of the intestines, fewer reconnections, and is seen to be an easier surgery for the surgeon, while offering similar weight loss results. However, recent studies have focused on the safety of the surgery and researchers are calling for more studies to focus on side effects as the procedure’s popularity continues to grow.

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