Have you ever thought about taking a stroll in the park, paddling a kayak, or going for a swim? Maybe you have, but then dismiss the idea because your weight keeps you from enjoying places like Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park in Westchester. Imagine how you would feel if you could dive into the park’s double-sized Olympic swimming pool, paddle a kayak across Mohansic Lake, or hike the miles of wooded trails through the park.

If your weight is preventing you from enjoying life in Westchester, even after weight-reduction surgery, you’re not alone. A study published in Gastroenterology Research and Practice found that about 10 percent of people who undergo surgery to lose weight will require a secondary surgery to correct a problem or further promote long-term weight loss. Your diet and exercise habits after bariatric surgery play a major part in losing weight and keeping it off. But sometimes Revisional Bariatric Surgery is recommended to help patients get better results.

What is Revisional Bariatric Surgery?

Revisional Bariatric Surgery is the process of correcting or improving a prior weight-reduction surgery such as a sleeve gastrectomy, gastric bypass, or lap-band. In most cases, these primary surgeries used to help patients lose weight are effective. But if a problem develops, the stomach stretches, or the original surgery can be improved with newer techniques to get better results, Revisional Bariatric Surgery can be a good option to help patients lose weight, lower the risk for chronic diseases, and improve quality of life.

  • Are you a candidate for Revisional Bariatric Surgery? A doctor will be able to determine that by evaluating your prior bariatric surgery, weight loss results, and risk factors for chronic disease, discussing your diet and exercise habits since surgery, and examining images of your stomach and digestive tract. If Revisional Bariatric Surgery is recommended to help improve your weight loss results, procedures that may help you get back on track include:

     

  • Sclerotherapy. Sometimes the stomach pouch can stretch after bariatric surgery. When this happens, your stomach is able to hold more food and it will take you longer to feel full. That’s a problem when you’re trying to lose weight and control portion sizes. Sclerotherapy helps reduce the size of your stomach with medication designed to create more scar tissue in the stomach. This technique requires a series of injections in the abdomen, and can be highly effective without invasive surgery.

     

  • Resizing the stomach using laparoscopic surgery. Another frequently used surgical technique in Revisional Bariatric Surgery involves resizing the stomach. In some cases, a sleeve gastrectomy may be recommended to replace an adjustable lap-band placed around the stomach during the primary surgery. In other cases, the size of the stomach can be reduced by making folds in the tissue of the stomach.

     

  • If you haven’t lost an optimal amount of weight after gastric bypass surgery, an adjustable lap-band can be placed over the gastric bypass to help control food intake and aid in weight loss. It’s typically a minimally invasive procedure that can be completed with laparoscopic surgery through a single incision.

     

  • Lengthening the Roux-Y limb of the small intestine. After evaluating your prior surgery and weight loss results, your doctor may recommend lengthening the Roux-Y limb of the small intestine to promote weight loss. Research published in the journal Obesity Surgery found that when they doubled the length of the Roux-Y limb, patients lost more weight and didn’t experience any negative side effects associated with the surgery.

     

  • Rerouting the digestive tract. Changing the way your body digests food is another surgical technique used in Revisional Bariatric Surgery. It’s sometimes scheduled as part of the treatment plan after vertical sleeve gastrectomy surgery. This surgery helps limit the amount of calories the body absorbs from food to help promote weight loss.

Benefits

When bariatric surgery is successful, the average patient loses about 50 percent of excess body fat during the first 1-2 years after surgery, according to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. Many patients are able to maintain the weight loss by eating healthy foods, practicing portion control, and getting regular exercise. Weight loss is the primary goal for bariatric surgery. It’s also effectively been used to treat chronic diseases for people who are obese. Revisional Bariatric Surgery to promote weight loss can provide a number of important health benefits such as:

  • Longer life and better quality of life
  • Lower risk of hypertension and better blood pressure
  • Better sleep quality and reduction in problems like snoring and sleep apnea
  • Healthier lungs to make breathing easier and reduce breathing problems linked to asthma
  • Healthy levels of good cholesterol and reduced bad cholesterol
  • Normal blood sugar levels, insulin control, and prevention or management of diabetes
  • Less joint pain in the back and knees and increased mobility
  • Reduced risk for heart disease, a heart attack, or stroke 

Recovery

They type of Revisional Bariatric Surgery you receive, your current health condition, and diet and exercise habits at the time of your surgery play a major role in how long it will take to recovery. Sclerotherapy patients may be able to continue their normal routine and eating habits during the schedule of injections. Some patients may resume normal activities in as little as 48 hours after surgery. More invasive or advanced procedures may take one to two months to fully recover after Revisional Bariatric Surgery.

Food Recommendations After Surgery

High-calorie, unhealthy food choices are frequently a primary factor that leads to obesity. To maximize your results after Revisional Bariatric Surgery, eating a healthy diet is very important. Your food choices should mainly come from fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds, lean meats, low-fat dairy or soy products and legumes. Drinking plenty of water can also help control hunger, and keep your body, brain, and muscles well-hydrated.

Some patients can resume their normal healthy-eating habits a short time after surgery. Others will need to follow a dietary plan similar to the primary surgery. This involves eating a liquid-only diet for one to two weeks after surgery. After that, pureed fruits and vegetables, soft foods, and small portions of solid foods can be introduced gradually. It’s also important to avoid sugar-sweetened beverages, candy, treats, and pastries, and processed foods high in calories with little to no nutritional value. After surgery, you may also discover that some foods upset your stomach, and you’ll learn to avoid them.

Follow Up Plan

Eating healthy foods and getting regular exercise are two of the most important things you can do to achieve optimal weight-loss results after Revisional Bariatric Surgery. But just as important is meeting with your doctor every couple of months during the first year after surgery. A study published in the journal Surgery for Obesity and Related Diseases found that patients who underwent bariatric surgery and kept all of their follow-up appointments lost 24 percent more weight than those who didn’t.

What happens at a follow-up visit? You’ll weigh-in and have your blood pressure checked. After that, you’ll visit with your doctor about your diet, exercise habits, sleep patterns, and other lifestyle factors that can affect your weight. It’s a great opportunity to measure your progress, get help if necessary, and keep you accountable to living a healthy life.

If you want to explore Westchester’s FDR Park and see the world from a different perspective on your own two feet without the burden of being obese, we can help. For more information, contact the Westchester office of the New York Bariatric Group.