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Duodenal Switch

Duodenal switch illustration

Duodenal Switch weight loss surgery is formally known as Biliary Pancreatic Diversion (BPD) with Duodenal Switch. This procedure is most often performed on patients who have a BMI of 50 or more and need to lose at least 100 pounds. This is the most effective bariatric surgery procedure for reducing Type II diabetes.1

During this procedure, a surgeon removes a portion of the stomach in the same manner as a Gastric Sleeve procedure. Next, nearly one-half of the small intestine is bypassed. 

A laparoscopic Duodenal Switch procedure generally takes between 1 and 1.5 hours and patients can either go home the same day or stay overnight in the hospital.

The Duodenal Switch Procedure

A laparoscopic Duodenal Switch procedure generally takes between 1 and 1.5 hours and patients can either go home the same day or stay overnight in the hospital.

There are two main steps to the Duodenal Switch procedure. The first stage is identical to a Gastric Sleeve procedure, where the surgeon uses a special stapling device to remove up to 80% of the stomach and creates a narrow sleeve from the remaining portion. This part of the surgery allows patients to feel fuller after eating significantly less food.

During the second part of the Duodenal Switch procedure, the surgeon changes the natural path of digestion by rerouting food from the upper part of the small intestine. To accomplish this, two incisions are made in the small intestine, one below the duodenum and another towards the lower end of the small intestine. The lower cut end is then brought up to the higher cut end, allowing food to bypass much of the small intestine. This second stage of Duodenal Switch surgery reduces the number of calories a patient’s body is able to absorb.

Duodenal Switch Recovery

Following Duodenal Switch weight loss surgery, patients can expect to be up and walking shortly after the procedure. Some postoperative pain can be anticipated, but this should be tolerable and pain medication will significantly enhance patient comfort. Patients are cautioned not to do any heavy lifting (more than 10 pounds) for at least 3 weeks after Duodenal Switch surgery, and should refrain from strenuous exercise for at least 4 weeks. The majority of patients are able to return to work roughly 1 week after weight loss surgery.

Duodenal Switch Follow-Up and Aftercare

After Duodenal Switch surgery, patients who adhere to our postsurgical and follow-up care regimen have better chances of long-term success. Two weeks after surgery, patients meet with their Physician Extender, who will monitor their healing, identify any potential complications, and make adjustments to their medications. Over the course of their weight loss journey, patients should continue to work with their Physician Extender as well as a health coach, dietitian, and psychologist as needed.

For more detailed information about what to expect before, during, and after Duodenal Switch surgery, please consult our Bariatric Surgery Manual.

Duodenal Switch Results

Duodenal Switch weight loss surgery is the most invasive form of bariatric surgery, but also yields the fastest weight loss results. Patients who undergo a Duodenal Switch procedure also see rapid and dramatic reduction in comorbidities, such as:

  • Diabetes cured in up to 92% of patients
  • 90% of Duodenal Switch patients are able to stop using CPAP machine for sleep apnea
  • 88% of patients are able to decrease asthma medication2

Patient Stories

Tiffany's weight loss transformation

Meet Tiffany

What was life like before bariatric surgery?
My weight stopped me from being able to go outside and chase my daughter around, jump on the trampoline, and not being able to ride on an airplane comfortably. I had tried everything to lose weight and it just wasn’t working. I didn’t have any medical issues except being overweight.

If you put off the decision to come in for a long time, why was that? What kept you from booking a consultation?
I had always thought about weight loss surgery but was scared. I kept telling myself I could lose the weight on my own but couldn’t.

What is your life like now? What’s the #1 thing you love being able to do now?
My life has changed tremendously. I have so much more energy. I can keep up with my three-year-old daughter. I work out almost every day. I have taken my life back, and my weight isn’t stopping me.

Change Your Story

Your Duodenal Switch Surgery Consultation

If you have a BMI of 50 or higher and suffer from Type II diabetes, you might be an ideal candidate for Duodenal Switch weight loss surgery. To learn more about your bariatric surgery opportunities, please contact us at Panhandle Weight Loss Center in Amarillo, Texas

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Keep up the great work!

Comparison of Surgical Procedures

BandingSleeve GastrectomyGastric BypassDuodenal Switch
Excess Weight Loss40-60%50-65%50-70%80-90%
Rate of Weight LossSlowerFasterFastestFastest
ComplicationsOccur LaterOccur EarlyOccur Early or LateOccur Early or Late
ReversibleYesNoVery DifficultVery Difficult
Implanted DeviceYesNoNoNo
Hospital Stay< 1 Day< 1 Day1 – 2 Days< 1 Day – 1 Day
Time Off Work1 Week1-2 Weeks2 Weeks2 Weeks
US Track RecordSince 1991Since 2000Since 1960sSince 1950s
Anti InflammatoryOkOkNot OkOk
Follow UpMost FrequentLeast FrequentMore FrequentMore Frequent
Weight RegainYesYesYesLess Likely
Convert Procedure to AnotherYesYesDifficultYes

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1 American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. Bariatric Surgery Procedures. Available: Accessed September 14, 2020.

2 Marceau P, Biron S, Hould FS, et al. Duodenal switch: long-term results. Obes Surg. 2007;17(11):1421-1430. doi:10.1007/s11695-008-9435-9. Available: Accessed September 14, 2020.

The surgeons at Panhandle Weight Loss Center have either authored or reviewed and approved this content.