What is Duodenal Switch Weight Loss Surgery?

Diet, exercise, anti-obesity drugs and behavioral therapy are recommended as the safe, and natural ways to treat obesity. While it is a much more invasive option, weight loss surgery is a method of treating obesity which is guaranteed to remove the excess weight. One such surgical procedure with regards to obesity treatment is the duodenal switch. This procedure results in weight loss, improves the overall quality of life for the patients and reduces the complications associated with obesity.

According to the National Institutes of Health, the following requirements must be met by a patient in order to qualify for this procedure:

  • The patient should have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or more
  • The patient should be should suffering from obesity-related conditions like sleep apnea, heart ailments, type 2 diabetes or osteoarthritis

What is Duodenal Switch Weight Loss Surgery?

In this operation, nearly 70 percent of the stomach, mostly belonging from its greater curvature, is removed. The small intestine is divided into two different pathways with a common channel. There is a shorter path called the digestive loop which carries food from the stomach to the common channel. The longer pathway is called the biliopancreatic loop which carries bile juices required for digestion produced in the liver to the common channel.

The common channel is a 75-150 centimeter long section of small intestine. It is here where the food mixes with the bile juices prior to its entry into the large intestine. In this way, the body gets a little time to capture calories from food as the long path of the small intestine is rerouted. Absorption of fat in the body is reduced which results in the patient absorbing only 20 percent of the fat consumed through food after the surgery.


·         Weight loss after the surgery is significant, with the condition of hyperlipidemia treated up to 99 percent
The chances of regaining the fat lost are very low

  • This procedure provides 98 percent cure from Type 2 diabetes in obese people
  • Sleep apnea condition is treated up to 92 percent and hypertension is reduced by 83 percent
  • The signaling hormone Ghrelin which makes us feel hungry is produced in less quantity after the surgery which results in lessened feelings of hunger
  • The diet is normal after the procedure when compared to other weight loss operations



  • Vitamin and mineral supplements are to be taken in addition to the normal diet due to reduces absorption of nutrients from food
  • For the rest of the life, a patient has to continuously undergo blood test compulsorily in order to ensure that the vitamins and minerals in the blood are at their optimal levels
  • Formation of gallstones after weight loss surgery is a common risk. Some physicians remove the gall bladder during this surgery itself while others prescribe medications to reduce the risk
  • Particularly bad smelling gas and diarrhea are reported by many people who undergo this surgery

Risks of Duodenal Switch Weight Loss Surgery:

  • Malnutrition (though preventable)
  • Hernia
  • Bowel obstruction
  • Blood clot in deep vein
  • Blood clot in the lungs
  • Leakage in the stomach
  • Infection


National Institute of Health: Biliopancreatic Diversion With Duodenal Switch

National Library of Medicine: The Duodenal Switch Operation for the Treatment of Morbid Obesity

1 response to What is Duodenal Switch Weight Loss Surgery?

  1. Fantastic post. Just discovered it on Bing. Thanks a lot for that helpful information. Continue to keep up the fantastic work :)

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *