Gastric bypass surgery is a surgical procedure that alters the process of digestion. There are several types of gastric bypass procedures, but they all involve bypassing part of the small intestine by varying degrees. For this reason, procedures of this type are referred to as malabsorptive procedures, because they involve bypassing a portion of the small intestine that absorbs nutrients.
Some of these procedures also involve stapling the stomach to create a small pouch that serves as the “new” stomach, or surgically removing part of the stomach.
Although a gastric bypass procedure is malabsorptive, it can also be restrictive because it reduces the size of the stomach so that the amount of food you can eat is restricted due to the smaller stomach. While malabsorptive procedures are more effective in contributing to weight loss than those that are solely restrictive, they also carry more risk for nutritional deficiencies.
Dr. Morton appears on the Today Show with actor Ron Lester: