slim vegas logo

When Is Revisional Surgery Necessary?

Oct 01, 2023
When Is Revisional Surgery Necessary?
After bariatric surgery, you may find that you haven’t gotten the results that you wanted. Or you may develop complications such as disrupted staples or GERD. In cases like these, revisional surgery may be necessary. Learn more here.

Each year, more than 250,000 Americans elect to undergo bariatric surgery to limit the size of their stomachs so they can lose weight more effectively and permanently. Bariatric surgery can reduce your risk of premature death by up to 50%.

Despite how effective bariatric surgery is, sometimes something goes wrong. Either complications arise from the initial surgery or, over time, elements such as staples or bands become dislodged. Also, it’s possible that you haven’t experienced the dramatic weight loss that you expected or needed to.

At Slim Vegas Bariatric & General Surgery in Las Vegas, Nevada, our fellowship-trained bariatric expert, Jon Williams, MD, performs bariatric surgery as well as surgery revisions. Because revisional surgery is a major procedure, he takes time and care to determine that you’re a candidate.

Do you need revisional bariatric surgery? Here are the most common instances when you might.

You’ve gained more weight after surgery

One of the most compelling reasons to undergo revisional bariatric surgery is if you’ve gained weight after your surgery. When bariatric surgery is successful, you can expect to lose as much as 60% of excess weight within six months and 77% within a year.

Even after your body adjusts to the reduced capacity for nutrition, you should be able to maintain at least 50% of that weight loss for life. This resolves health issues that could otherwise shorten your life. Successful weight loss with bariatric surgery results in remission rates of:

  • 96% for obstructive sleep apnea
  • 92% for Type 2 diabetes
  • 76% for dyslipidemia
  • 75% for hypertension
  • 58% for cardiovascular disease

If you’ve gained weight after your initial surgery, however, you don’t get those protections and may not experience remission. Dr. Williams evaluates your overall health and conducts tests to determine if you’re a candidate for revisional surgery.

You’ve developed complications

Poorly performed bariatric surgery can cause complications that make your life uncomfortable. Some signs that your surgery isn’t working for you the way it should are the presence of:

  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
  • Problems swallowing
  • Gastric ulcers

Dr. Williams conducts an in-depth investigation to ensure that your symptoms are a result of your first surgery and not related to another condition. 

In addition to physical discomfort from the initial bariatric surgery, some aspects of your surgery may have have become dislodged or dysfunctional over time, including problems such as:

  • Gastric pouch leaks
  • Ruptured or displaced gastric bands
  • Disrupted staples or gastric band ports
  • Enlarged gastric pouch

Dr. Williams examines the state of your surgical site through an endoscopic examination. He passes the flexible endoscope through your mouth and down your throat to evaluate your stomach and upper intestine.

What happens with revisional surgery

Whenever possible, Dr. Williams takes the least invasive approach to performing your revisional procedure. Laparoscopic surgery, for instance, minimizes trauma and decreases scarring and recovery time. 

Depending on why you need revisional surgery, Dr. Williams may:

Even with a minimally invasive approach, revisional surgery is still a major procedure that requires hospitalization. You can expect to spend a day or two in the hospital for recovery. 

You may need to modify your diet after surgery and start with soft foods only. You also must reduce your activities for the first few weeks following your revision surgery.

Dr. Williams doesn’t take revisional surgery lightly. He only recommends it if he determines that your health and weight will benefit from the procedure. Are you a candidate? To find out, contact the Slim Vegas team today. Call or use our online scheduling form to make an appointment.