Long term duodenal switch experiences

Geraldine (Bunnie)

on 1/26/18 5:42 pm - Irvine, CA

I am looking to hear from long term duodenal switch patients (over 5 years). How is your quality of life, your nutritional health. Do you suffer from vitamin or mineral deficiencies? How is your blood work? How are your bowels? In general what symptoms do you have that are caused by the DS procedure? Thank you.

on 1/27/18 11:16 am

Had mine in 2003. I have no problems and all I need to do is take my vites twice a day. No deficiencies, no issues. I usually poop twice a day right after I get up in the morning. Symptoms? None. I am very healthy.

You won't find anything that works better than the DS.

on 1/28/18 1:22 pm

Just realized I should have said I DO have a hernia that is most likely a direct result of abdominal surgery. My DS was in 2003 and in 2009, I coughed and there it was, a hernia. But anyone can get a hernia. Abdominal surgery makes it more likely to happen!

on 1/28/18 5:27 pm - Boynton Beach, FL

my Surgery was Nov 2004 & by Winter of 2007 I had tummy tuck & hernia repair. I also got a fistula so summer of 2007 they tried to open me but the Mesh scared up dr.s couldn't cut through but because it was an attempt it was considered a 3rd surgery. So in about 2011 the hernia in stomach is back & NO DR. will touch me as after 3 surgeries a Dr. won't even try to fix it. Even the Chief of Surgery said to me & I Quote " Hope you get to the hospital before all your intestines come out". It has become so painful I bought a new Binder that goes around your stomach after RNY. My RNY was open.

Eric D

on 1/28/18 7:30 am - Parma, OH
DS on 04/15/13

I'm close to 5 years now. Nutritionally I'm fine, no issues with my bloodwork. It's been over 2 years since I made any substantial changes to my vitamin regimen. On and off iron, finally off based on a diagnosis of chronic anemia which just means I have some underlying inflammation that they can't identify that keeps my numbers at just the low range. Adding iron doesn't really help except to put my total iron over the top which is bad.

Bowels are mostly of a pudding consistency to small solid pieces. Depending on how I've been eating I go once or twice in the morning and I'm done. Volume and/or types of food can increase the frequency but nothing that causes me a problem.

I can't say I have any symptoms related to the DS. Being anal about my vitamins is maybe a symptom but not really what you are looking for. Several ailments that are more related to my pre-op diabetes than to the DS but they weren't fixable by the DS. Neuropathy in my feet can sometimes cause foot issues if I am not good about self exams. I tend to have high potassium levels that I have to watch my potassium intake. I take a BP and water pill because I had some damage to my kidney ( from the diabetes I'm told ). Cataracts I was warned about pre-op - scheduled for surgery in March, and some kind of low pressure glaucoma that I'm taking drops for. So, nothing out of the ordinary for a 60 year old and even though it is always the first question from me no Doc has ever attributed any issue to the DS, vitamin deficiency, or any secondary cause stemming from the DS.

More as the years go by I'm sure but I've never seen any anecdotal posts about long term DS problems.

I bike for several hours during the summer and swim for an hour during the winter. It has given me a better quality of life.

 HW  552    CW  229  SW 464 4/15/13 - Lap DS by Dr. Philip  Schauer - Cleveland Clinic.



Beam me up Scottie
on 1/28/18 4:54 pm
DS on 02/17/06 with
I had mine 11+ years ago. I'm almost at 12.

BEST DECISION EVER! I read a lot of stories about regain on this forum- A LOT. Even people that use to "mock" us telling us that we were pooping our pants and had uncontrollable gas, or that we'd die of malabsorption. They regained all of their weight, some of them have regained plus some.

To answer your questions.....quality of life is excellent. I'm healthy, not deficient in anything and my bloodwork is good. I have a couple of BMs in the morning and then I'm usually good for the rest of the day.

I do take vitamins, it's part of my daily routine. But I eat pretty much whatever I want. I would have failed every other surgery- (I would have failed not them).

on 1/28/18 5:18 pm - Boynton Beach, FL

I actually stopped all vitamins as I only drink Vitamin Water Zero. My surgery was November 2004.

I do suffer from 2 COmplications from RNY tho. Got a Fistula (2 organs attaching) mine was old and new stomach & Gastroparesis. Some doctors call it diabetic Gastroparesis but you don't have to be a diabetic. Gastroparesis is slow emptying of the stomach ( intestines don't open as the VAGUS Nerve in the stomach was severed. Diabetes destroys the nerves so either way it's bad. Think the dumping syndrome if you ate food with sugar ( I never got the dumping syndrome as I was warned about it & didn't want it) I today basically after each meal sit over a garbage pail for hours. I can get away with yogurt but how long can I just eat that lol.

I have my blood checked every 3 months & all vitamin levels are perfect. In general anyone who has or had RNY will need to take vitamins the rest of their lives but hey try Vitamin water zero (you may never know if it could help) I buy Rise (Orange) & GO (Mixed berry). Go is very hard to find but they usually run about 1 buck for a 20 ounce bottle. Walmart & Target carry it.

ps BAI Drinks work also. not the carbonated ones in cans but the ones in bottles

Good Luck

Eric D

Janet P.
on 1/29/18 8:15 am

I will be 15 years post-op of the DS next month. I was 45 when I had my DS. My quality of life is great. I do deal with iron deficiency anemia - I was pre-menopausal when I had my surgery and unfortunately never really absorbed oral iron. I have iron infusions periodically to keep my iron levels within normal range). I also now have osteoporosis. My first bone density scan (1 year post-op) was normal and over the past 15 years I have now developed full osteoporosis. I don't know if it's genetics or the DS or a combination.

I have typical bowel movements for me. Bowels are controlled by what you eat. If I have a high carb day I will deal with that in the bathroom. These are just things you learn living with the DS.

I get blood work once a year and adjust my vitamins accordingly. Other than iron my labs are pretty good. Just have to tweak based on results. Something else you learn living with the DS.

With all this said, I would have the DS again in a heartbeat. I no longer have life threatening sleep apnea nor do I suffer from HBP. I was never diabetic but I was definitely on the way there. Now my levels are perfectly normal.

Janet in Leesburg
DS 2/25/03
Hazem Elariny

on 2/1/18 10:07 am

had my DS done Nov, 2001, best thing I ever did. I have good health now but have to take large doses of prescription vitamin D to keep from getting low, and my iron comes and goes as far as being normal. Everything else in my bloodwork is normal. Sometimes I have to work hard to get my protein in because I don't like the powdered drinks, but I never feel deprived. I can pretty much eat everything I want in the amounts I want as long as I'm sure to get my protein which doesn't leave a lot of room for junk! I love love love that I can eat the fats and creams, I never liked the lowfat so this has been the perfect plan for me. Whole milk and half and half in my coffee, heaven! I do get a lot of gas, probably because I've always been lactose intolerant too. So if I go out with friends I will never have carbonated drinks or dairy and I'm fine. I can have these things at home. When I have to have a bowel movement it comes on pretty suddenly, but over the years I've determined it's the dairy. Years ago on the advise of the nutritionist I added a magnesium supplement to ease some constipation, and still take the magnesium. That's probably part of why it comes on suddenly too. I find the number of supplements needed to be daunting, I have to write down what time I took the last dose to be sure I get them all in. For me that's the hardest part of the surgery, and I work hard to take them all. So basically there are things to deal with, but nothing greater than being at a comfortable weight and knowing that your clothes will fit you next year. For me, to gain weight I have to work at drinking sugary pop etc, so I have been able to control my weight for the first time in my life. I would do it again.

Janet P.
on 2/2/18 9:17 am

Sheryl49 are you taking DRY vitamin D? If you're taking the prescription green gel cap you're not going to absorb it because it's oil-based. You need DRY D3 - Amazon sells Biotech D3 in 50,000 unit capsules. I take 3 per day and my D is perfect.

Janet in Leesburg
DS 2/25/03
Hazem Elariny