What Calls for Revision Bariatric Surgery?

Have you had a weight-loss surgery that isn’t working as well as it once did? There are several different reasons that you may consider having your bariatric procedure surgically revised.  Depending on which procedure you initially had (gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, etc.), there are various options for a second stage surgery. Though revision weight-loss surgeries have a slightly higher rate of complications than the initial procedures, they are safe and can be highly effective options to restore weight loss (Yilmaz et al. 2017). This blog post examines the reasons you might consider having revision bariatric surgery and some of the available options.

Reasons for Revision Bariatric Surgery

While most patients who undergo weight loss surgeries experience lasting weight loss, there are some who begin to regain weight after several months or years following their procedure. There are many different factors that can contribute to this weight gain.  For instance, in some patients who have had a laparoscopic gastric banding (lap band) surgery, the band may have slipped or loosened over time, allowing greater food consumption. Because of this possibility, the rate of revision is highest for lap band surgeries as compared to other bariatric surgeries.

Similarly, patients who have undergone a gastric sleeve or bypass sometimes experience stretching of the stomach over time, also increasing the amount of food that can be consumed. While the stretching of the stomach is natural, patients who eat more as the stomach stretches are at risk for regaining weight they lost with the initial procedure.

Still, other patients may have trouble sticking to recommendations regarding diet and exercise that would otherwise support continued weight loss. Whether due to stressors, lack of support, or other mental and emotional factors, it is not uncommon for patients to struggle with adhering to healthy lifestyle habits. Eating high-calorie and high-sugar foods can undermine your weight loss and can even reverse it over time.  Unfortunately, when we become stressed, we are more likely to make poor food choices and stop exercising. Discouragement from weight gain can further contribute to stress, creating a vicious cycle that you may find hard to break.

For some patients who have had gastric sleeve or lap band surgeries, acid reflux can cause discomfort. Revision to gastric bypass or duodenal switch can also help reduce or eliminate this problem.

Is Recovery and Weight Loss Different for Revision Bariatric Procedures?

Though the recovery process is similar for revision bariatric procedures and the initial weight-loss surgery, you may need a bit of additional time for recovery because revision procedures often involve treatment of scar tissue.

Each patient we see is given extensive coaching prior to any surgery so that they know what to expect during their recovery and are fully prepared to follow guidelines during the healing process. As with all bariatric surgeries, it is important to follow these instructions to support healing and maximize outcomes.

At the Chicago Institute of Advanced Bariatrics, we are fully committed to your success. There is great variation in outcomes of revision bariatric surgery (Ibrahim et al. 2017), so it is important to choose a surgeon who is experienced and highly skilled, and Dr. Lutfi is both!

We can determine whether a revision bariatric procedure may be right for you and help you to address any complicating factors.  We will fully customize your treatment plan and make sure you can meet your goals. Regardless of what prior procedure you’ve had and the reasons you are considering a revision surgery, we can help.

For more information on revision bariatric surgery, contact us at 773.327.6800 today to schedule your free consultation.


Ibrahim, A., Ghaferi, A., Thumma, J., Dimick, J. (2017). Variation in Outcomes at Bariatric Centers of Excellence. JAMA Surgery. 152(7): 629-636.

Yilmaz, H., Ece, I., and Sahin, M. (2017). Revisional Surgery after Failed Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy: Retrospective Analysis of Causes, Results, and Technical Considerations. Obesity Surgery. 27(11): 2855-2860.