VBG removal please help!

on 7/9/19 4:50 pm

I had VBG surgery 23 years ago. I have had good success with it until recently. I have developed GERD a few years ago and over the last few weeks what I can eat and keep down and minimized to where its only liquids at this point. I was admitted into the hospital a few days ago and the Gastro Dr. has referred me to surgeons to possibly remove the surgery or revise it to a VSG or RNY. Honestly I just want it out and to be done with it completely. I am not sure what this process entitles though and if it can safely be done. Wanted to know if anyone has removed the VBG or has had it revised and their experience. I read online it is a pretty invasive surgery but then have read they could do it laparoscopic? Before I travel to a specialist, as the closest one that will even consider doing it is 4 hours away, I would like to get opinions from anyone that has gone through this. Thank you in advance! Its a bit scary!

on 7/10/19 4:04 am, edited 7/10/19 10:19 am - WI

I had a revision from VBG to RNY in 2010. It literally saved my life. I had developed Barrett's Esophagus from 25 years of GERD and was headed toward cancer rapidly.

My revision surgery was very complicated, so I'm not sure I'm the best person to respond to you. The surgeon who did my original VBG in 1986 did not do it right and I had some pretty severe deformities that had to be repaired. I went to 7 specialists *****fused to help me because they said they had never seen anything like it. I finally got a referral to Mayo Clinic and a surgeon that was willing to try. He basically had to rebuild my entire digestive system, so my revision would probably not look like the average revision.

My surgery took almost 8 hours. It was an open surgery (not laparoscopic) and I was kept in the hospital for more than a week to make sure there would be no leaks. My recovery was very difficult, but I woke up from surgery with no more GERD and it has never returned. I still have to have regular endoscopies to watch the lesions on my esophagus, but there has been no more damage done since my revision.

Short answer...run...don't walk to the nearest surgeon and get this revision done. Almost everyone who had the VBG done has had to have it revised. It can be done safely...in fact... you are in more danger if you don't revise. You will feel so much better if you go with a revision to RNY. I have not felt this healthy in decades.

HW 270 SW 236 GW 160 CW 145 (15 pounds below goal!)