Dumping Syndrome

Dumping syndrome is a common problem after gastric bypass surgery. Dumping syndrome is the medical name for a group of symptoms caused by the stomach emptying too quickly post-surgery.  

'Dumping' occurs when food leaves the stomach too fast and is emptied quickly into the small intestine. Before surgery, the contents of the stomach slowly pass into the small intestine.

After surgery, due to an increase in gastrointestinal hormones or a widened opening between the stomach pouch and the duodenum, a large amount of food can enter the small intestine rapidly.

Dumping syndrome is a problem for around 40 percent of patients post gastric bypass surgery. Most patients experience only mild symptoms of dumping which can be controlled by lying down and monitoring the diet eating to reduce the symptoms of dumping.

If dumping is severe, patients may require hospital treatment to relieve the symptoms and in some cases narrow the opening between the duodenum and the stomach to prevent dumping occurring.

Symptoms of Dumping Syndrome

  • Nausea/Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Sweating
  • Bloating of the stomach

Preventing Dumping Syndrome

Patients can reduce the risk of dumping occurring by following a nutritionally balanced post-gastric surgery diet, limiting the amount of fat and sugar consumed and by avoiding drinking with meals.

Patients may find that lying down after meals slows digestion and prevents dumping occurring. 

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