Gastric bypass is a surgical procedure that alters your gastrointestinal system so your stomach consists of a small pouch that only accepts small amounts of food at a time. By eating small meals regularly, your body stays nourished, you feel satisfied, and you lose the excess pounds that endanger your health.
Once the pounds melt off and you experience health benefits such as improved sleep, better cholesterol levels, and more energy, you may feel as though you’re living a dream come true. But if the pounds start to come back after a while, you may worry that the dream has ended.
At Slim Vegas Bariatric & General Surgery clinic in Las Vegas, Nevada, we have a nonsurgical solution to weight regain after bariatric surgery. In most cases, weight regain happens when the gastric opening stretches over time. Our fellowship-trained bariatric specialist, Jon Williams, MD, remedies the problem with transoral outlet reduction (TORe).
What is TORe, and how does it work? The answers are here.
If you’re like most women and men who’ve undergone gastric bypass surgery for weight loss, you probably lost anywhere from 30%-50% of your excess weight in the first six months after your procedure. You may have lost up to 77% of excess weight in the first year.
In most cases, people who’ve undergone bariatric surgery maintain 50%-60% of that initial weight loss for 10-14 years. Other benefits include:
But when the pounds start to creep back up, you may feel disheartened. You may even feel like a failure: Why doesn’t your bypass work anymore? The answer is probably, simply, that the passageway between your stomach and small intestine — the gastric outlet — has become stretched out.
When the gastric outlet is too large, food passes through your stomach more quickly. This may leave you feeling hungry and cause you to eat more than is advised for weight maintenance. The end result is that you start to regain the weight you lost.
Unlike gastric bypass surgery, TORe is a nonsurgical procedure that requires no incisions or stitches. Instead, while you’re under general anesthesia, your specialist inserts an endoscope through your mouth and pushes it gently into your digestive tract.
The endoscope contains tools including a miniature camera that transmits real-time 3D images to a computer screen so Dr. Williams can precisely suture your gastric outlet tighter. This reduces the size of the opening that allows food into your stomach pouch. In general, he reduces the opening until it measures only 8-10 mm.
Once you recover from the procedure, you can only eat small amounts of food at a time — just as you did after bariatric surgery. The smaller opening slows the passage of food from your stomach pouch into your small intestine, and you once again feel satisfied with smaller meals.
Even though TORe is nonsurgical, you must still allow a few days to recover from the procedure. You may need to stay overnight in the hospital.
Just as with bariatric surgery, you must limit yourself to a liquid diet for the first few days after the TORe procedure. Gradually, you add in soft foods, and you return to normal meals after about four weeks. The Slim Vegas team advises you when to transition, based on your follow-up visits.
The success rate of TORe is 99.89%. After TORe, many patients attain an even lower weight than they did after the initial gastric bypass.
After your procedure, you also receive ongoing support from our team to ensure that you stick to your dietary plan and achieve your goals. It’s possible that you may need follow-up TORe in the future, if your gastric outlet stretches again.
If you experience weight gain after gastric bypass surgery, you can regain your dream — and lose excess pounds — with TORe at Slim Vegas Bariatric & General Surgery. Contact our knowledgeable and supportive team by phone or online for a TORe evaluation today.