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Bariatric Surgery

Bariatric surgery, also called weight-loss surgery, is several surgical techniques that can reduce the size of your stomach and/or allow food to bypass part of your small intestine.

Being overweight or obese are major risk factors for several chronic diseases, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. People who are severely obese are at a more significant medical risk for disability or premature death related to their weight. 

The results of bariatric surgery are more complex than merely decreasing a person’s weight on a scale. Bariatric surgery and the resulting weight loss may reduce a person’s risk of life-threatening complications related to obesity. You can also expect to gain stamina, energy, and lead a more active lifestyle following weight loss. 

Bariatric Surgery Types We Offer 


Roux-en-Y is one type of bariatric, or weight loss, surgery offered at Lompoc Valley Medical Center. It is also known as gastric bypass surgery. During this procedure, the surgeon uses a surgical stapler to create a small stomach pouch, about the size of an adult thumb, and attaches it directly to the small intestine, bypassing a significant portion of the stomach and the duodenum. 

The name, Roux-en-Y, is derived from the area of the small intestine where the pouch is attached. It is called the Roux limb, and post-surgery this creates a “Y” shape. 

The pouch restricts food intake by allowing only a small amount of food to be ingested at one time. Initially, the newly created pouch can hold approximately 1-ounce of food. In time, that amount may increase to 4 to 8 ounces. 

While also decreasing the amount of food a person can intake, the surgery also reduces the calories and nutrients absorbed into the body. 

Roux-en-Y may have these benefits: 

  • The smaller stomach will make a person feel full after eating smaller amounts of food. 
  • Average of 70-75 percent loss of excess weight in the first year. 
  • Average of 60-70 percent loss of excess weight maintained after five years. 
  • Improvement in conditions such as Type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and gastroesophageal reflux diseases (GERD). 

Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery is performed laparoscopically and can take between 2 to 4 hours. 

diagram with stomach after gastric bypass

Gastric Sleeve 

Sleeve Gastrectomy surgery is a procedure only on the stomach, and not the intestine. During the procedure, the surgeon turns the stomach into a pouch that looks like a long tube, or sleeve. Once the stomach is separated into a smaller tube, the remainder of the stomach is removed. Typically, about 80 percent of the stomach is removed. 

This type of surgery removes approximately two-thirds of the stomach, leading to a decreased appetite and a quicker sense of feeling “full” for the patient. 

Post-surgery, only a small amount of food, a few ounces, may be eaten at one time. 

Sleeve Gastrectomy may have these benefits: 

  • Mechanically decreases the size of the stomach, and also reduces the secretion of the hormone ghrelin, which is responsible for the feeling of fullness and is often called the ‘hunger hormone.’ 
  • The food you eat will follow the normal digestive path, allowing nutrients to be absorbed from food. 
  • Average of 40 to 70 percent loss of excess weight in the first year 
  • Improvement by as much as 75 percent in conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, obstructive sleep apnea 
diagram of stomach with gastric sleeve

What to Expect With Bariatric Surgery 

Lompoc Health is here to guide you through your weight loss surgery and after-care. There are a number of requirements that must be followed prior to having a surgical date, as well as post-surgical follow-ups. This process may take several months, to schedule appropriate appointments and complete insurance documentation. 

As you proceed toward bariatric surgery, you will need to undergo a series of tests and procedures. Our Bariatric Program Coordinator will assist you in making a plan to accomplish these requirements. In the meantime, there are several steps each patient can take to get prepared for the surgery and its aftermath. Patients considering surgery should begin taking a multi-vitamin with iron daily to improve general health. 

Considering a Bariatric Weight Loss Procedure?

Our Weight-Loss Surgery Program will focus on patients between the ages of 18 to 65. Depending on a number of factors, females with a BMI of 60 or less may be considered for surgery, while in general, males with a BMI of 55 or less may be considered. Patients with other obesity-related health issues, such as diabetes, sleep apnea or hypertension, may qualify for bariatric surgery with approximate BMIs of 35-44. 

Benefits of Bariatric Surgery 

For those who have struggled with weight, the benefits of weight loss surgery may involve more than just an immediate loss of pounds on the scale. There may be significant health improvements, as well as a change in societal attitudes, improvements of self-esteem, reduction of depressive symptoms, and more. Various medical studies related to bariatric surgery have also tallied the potential for the decline in other medical problems or concerns, such as:  

We Can Help Schedule a Consultation We understand that you are trying to be as healthy as possible and that the journey to weight loss is often a difficult one. Sometimes diet and exercise are simply not enough.

Call our Weight-Loss Surgery Program Coordinator Kassi Smith, BSN, at (805) 737-3382 to schedule a no-commitment, free, one-on-one consultation.

Get Help Today

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