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Tijuana Bariatric Center Blog

History of Bariatric Surgery

Illustration of digestive tractBariatric surgery has allowed thousands of obese patients to drop excess pounds and take control of their health. With a single surgical procedure, patients can reduce or eliminate their obesity-related health conditions, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes.

Since bariatric surgery was first introduced, advances have continually been made. Today, there are multiple bariatric methods to choose from. The various types of bariatric surgery enable treatment to be tailored to the unique needs and desires of each patient.

Here, patients can learn more about the history of bariatric surgery, and how it allows our Tijuana, Mexico surgeons at Tijuana Bariatric Center to offer the safest and most advanced surgical weight loss techniques.

Jejunoileal Bypass

The first metabolic surgery dates back to 1954; it was performed at the University of Minnesota. This procedure was called jejunoileal bypass and was based on the theory of malabsorption. If a portion of the digestive tract could be bypassed, then the body would absorb fewer nutrients and calories, thus resulting in weight loss.

Although many bariatric procedures rely on this same theory, this surgical technique differed. It bypassed the majority of the small intestines, while keeping the stomach intact. Weight loss results following this procedure were significant, but it also resulted in undesirable side effects, such as dehydration and diarrhea.

Ultimately, the flaws in this procedure prevented it from ever gaining widespread attention or success.

The Start of Bariatric Surgery 

The first technique that was labeled bariatric surgery was introduced in the 1960s by Dr. Edward E. Mason. Dr. Mason observed that patients who had to have a portion of their stomach removed to treat stomach cancer or ulcers experienced the unexpected side effect of significant weight loss.

 Dr. Mason figured that the same technique could be used to encourage weight loss in obese individuals. While the initial method that Dr. Mason used involved a loop bypass (with less removal of the stomach), he further adjusted the technique and introduced RYGBP, which is a gastric procedure that is still offered today.

RYGBP removes a greater portion of the stomach and bypasses just enough of the intestines to limit calorie intake without resulting in dehydration or severe malabsorption.

Treatment Advances

Although there are variations to each bariatric surgery procedure, the general techniques employed today do not differ much from those introduced in the 1960s.

However, one major advance that has further enhanced the safety of bariatric surgery is the laparoscopic technique. Laparoscopic gastric bypass was performed for the first time in 1994. Laparoscopic gastric bypass requires a much smaller incision, which reduces the risk of surgical complications, and allows for a shorter recovery period.

Since it was first performed, laparoscopic gastric bypass has become increasingly popular.

Learn More

At Tijuana Bariatric Center, we offer a comprehensive range of bariatric surgery techniques that allow patients to safely lose the weight that is compromising their health. If you would like to learn more about these services, contact us at your earliest convenience.

Tagged In: Bariatric Surgery

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