Duodenal switch

Spire Hartswood Hospital offers expert bariatric treatment including duodenal switch surgery to patients of Brentwood, Romford, Chelmsford and the surrounding areas of Essex and London. 

What is duodenal switch surgery?

The duodenal switch is a type of surgery that restricts both the quantity of food that can be accommodated by the stomach and the number of calories that can be absorbed and used by the body.

The duodenal switch combines the creation of a moderately sized stomach pouch with bypassing part of the small intestine. This allows the patient to lose weight without significantly altering their eating habits. The stomach is able to hold approximately five to six ounces of food, while other common procedures typically leave it able to hold one half to one full ounce.

Why do people choose to have duodenal switch surgery?

Duodenal switch surgery can help people with obesity lose a substantial amount of weight, after other methods like diet and exercise have failed. Obesity is associated with a multitude of health problems and losing weight can also help to reduce them. Duodenal switch surgery can resolve metabolic syndrome, diabetes,  high blood pressure, obstructive sleep apnoea and more.

Duodenal switch surgery may be appropriate for you if:

  • You are morbidly obese (have a BMI of over 40)
  • You have a BMI of over 35 and suffer from a condition that poses a serious health risk (e.g. diabetes, heart disease or high blood pressure)
  • All appropriate non-surgical measures have been tried but have failed to achieve or maintain adequate, clinically beneficial weight loss
  • You are generally fit for anaesthesia and surgery and commit to the need for long-term follow-up.

Benefits of duodenal switch

The main benefit of duodenal switch surgery is its ability to help patients lose a significant amount of weight. Each patient is unique; however there are a number of positive effects of losing weight which are commonly experienced:

  • Reduction in the health risks associated with obesity
  • Improved health and mobility
  • Improved mental wellbeing
  • Boost to self esteem and self confidence

What happens during duodenal switch surgery?

Whilst under general anaesthetic, approximately 75% of the stomach is removed by a sleeve gastrectomy procedure. The stomach remains attached to the first segment of the small intestine, the duodenum, which is then separated from the rest of the small intestine and attached to the lowest part of the small intestine instead.

By bypassing the majority of the small intestine, the body's ability to digest fat, and thus absorb calories in fat, is severely reduced.

As the size of the stomach is reduced, patients feel full sooner than usual, but the bypass part of the procedure also means weight can reduce even if eating more or less normally.

Is duodenal switch surgery available on the NHS?

NHS funding for this procedure is limited and varies by area. For this reason, many people find that getting a private gastric bypass operation is the best option.

Duodenal switch surgery aftercare

When you go home you will need to continue your post-op diet plan, as recommended by the weight loss team at Spire Hartswood. For example, you may be asked to consume 90gm of protein a day, consume very little fat otherwise to avoid diarrhoea and flatulence, take vitamin supplements A, B, D, K at double the daily requirements, and take regular exercise.

Treatment of this kind requires a life-long commitment. Plenty of rest is also important but you will be encouraged to gradually build up levels of exercise. Most patients can return to work two to three weeks after surgery, but a little longer if you work in heavy manual labour.

Duodenal switch surgery from Spire Healthcare

With Spire Healthcare you will be treated by an experienced bariatric (obesity) surgeon at a time that suits you. You will be treated in a premium private hospital, not a clinic, and you can be assured of our commitment to healthcare standards and infection control excellence. What’s more, you’ll be able to recuperate in your own private room with friends and family able to visit when you wish.

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