Gastric Bypass Term Paper

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Gastric Bypass

Multiple reports that more and more adults and even children have become morbidly obese in the United States have led to searches for effective interventions. One of the interventions beginning to receive widespread use is gastric bypass surgery, which limits the amount of food an individual can consume and thus helps prevent overeating that leads to or supports a state of obesity.

The articles selected for review in this paper related to gastric bypass surgery demonstrate both the growing population and success of this surgery and information regarding concerns about both safety and efficacy of the approach. The paper will provide an overview of discussion regarding gastric bypass surgery including benefits and risks.

Sugarman (2002) compared Roux-en-Y gastric bypass with other types of surgery and found it to be superior, resulting in loss of up to two-thirds of body weight within two years. He noted significant complications including a mortality rate of 1% of this type of surgery, with more deaths in extremely obese patients, and reported that the surgery often resulted in nutritional problems that had to be resolved with supplements. Nevertheless, he found that patients as a group greatly decreased their degree of obesity, often within months; that sleep apnea either resolved or improved significantly, to the point that many could stop using CPAP machinery during sleep.
Urinary incontinence improved 95% of the time along with dramatic improvements in both blood pressure and diabetes. The problem of acid reflux was more complex, with improvements in some patients and deterioration in others.

Berke (2000) wrote about the medical management of patients receiving gastric bypass surgery. He pointed out the current need for such surgery in that obesity leaves patients at risk for other serious illness including osteoarthritis, diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure. He pointed out that traditional, more conservative approaches including diet and exercise did not always help those who were extremely obese, and that some patients' overall deteriorating health demanded a more time-efficient solution. He demonstrated that obesity can have multiple causes and that medical science does not have non-surgical solutions for all of them yet. Berke took a conservative approach, outlining when patients might be candidates for either lifestyle change or pharmaceuticals as a better approach. He listed the typical benefits and common side effects of the drugs currently available, noting that some of the side effects of these meds, including high blood pressure, could be problematical for patients whose obesity had already caused or contributed to hypertension. He warned that although the risks for specific individuals in gastric bypass surgery can be significant, for some patients, rapid….....

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