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Gastric Sleeve vs. Gastric Bypass:
Which is Right for You?

Obese patients are at increased risk of developing serious health conditions that cannot only diminish your quality of life but shorten your lifespan altogether. Fortunately, safe bariatric surgery is more accessible to patients than ever before with the rise of medical tourism in Tijuana, Mexico. Gastric bypass and gastric sleeve surgery are two of the most popular bariatric procedures that the Tijuana Bariatric Center can coordinate for patients who wish to achieve substantial weight loss. While the procedures share certain aspects, there are important differences that may make one surgery more appropriate for your needs. By working with a doctor within the Tijuana Bariatric Center preferred doctor network, you can determine whether gastric sleeve vs. gastric bypass surgery is right for you. 

Smiling woman in forest spreading arms wide

Determining which type of bariatric surgery best meets your needs is an incredibly important decision during your treatment planning.

Comparing the Surgical Procedures

While gastric bypass surgery has been a trusted weight loss procedure for many years, gastric sleeve surgery is growing in popularity and shows promising results.

To undergo either gastric sleeve or bypass, patients must be at least 18 years old. However, these procedures are not usually recommended for patients over 65. These bariatric surgeries are best for patients with a body mass index (BMI) greater than 40 but can also benefit those with a BMI of 35 or more who are struggling with serious health concerns related to excess weight.

Gastric Sleeve

During gastric sleeve surgery, a procedure which is strictly restrictive in nature, the actual size of the stomach is reduced. A significant portion of the organ is removed to create a sleeve-shaped tube. This allows patients to become fuller faster and stay full for longer periods of time.*

Patients should be aware that gastric sleeve surgery is not always covered by insurance. It is a newer procedure that is often considered experimental and has not been thoroughly studied. 

Gastric Bypass

In comparison, a doctor will section the stomach off into two separate areas during gastric bypass surgery. The top portion, or pouch, is where the food you consume will be directed. The pouch will be connected to a minimal portion of the small intestine to reduce the number of calories which are absorbed by the body. Gastric bypass relies on both malabsorptive and restrictive techniques.

Potential Risks

While the bariatric doctors in our network have completed thousands of surgeries without complications, both procedures share many of the same risks such as:

  • Infection
  • Gastrointestinal leakage
  • Blood clots
  • Malnutrition

While these procedures are both considered to be very safe, gastric sleeve surgery is less invasive. This can lead to certain benefits, such as reduced recovery time. Additionally, gastric bypass patients are more likely to develop dumping syndrome. This condition occurs when a patient consumes large amounts of sugar or eats certain foods too quickly and can cause vomiting, painful cramping, and diarrhea.  

Expected Results and Lifestyle Changes

Both gastric sleeve and gastric bypass patients have reportedly lost more than half of their weight. However, results largely depend on a patient’s lifestyle and commitment to sustaining weight loss. While all bariatric surgery patients must adopt a healthy diet and exercise regimen, gastric bypass patients will need to consume greater amounts of vitamin and mineral supplements in order to maintain healthy levels in the body.*

Learn Which Procedure is Right for You

While gastric bypass surgery has been a trusted weight loss procedure for many years, gastric sleeve surgery is growing in popularity and shows promising results.* Contact Tijuana Bariatric Center online to be connected with a skilled bariatric doctor who can help you achieve your weight loss goals. 

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