Anastomotic Stricture Formation after Roux-En-Y Gastric Bypass Surgery: A Single Center Retrospective Cohort Study

Rohini R Vanga, Raj Majithia, Frederick C Finelli, Timothy R Shope, Timothy R Koch


AIM: Roux-en-Y gastric bypass is used for treating medically-complicated obesity. Gastrojejunal anastomotic stricture is a common complication reported in 3% to 27% of these patients. The pathogenesis of postoperative strictures is not well understood, but ischemia has been hypothesized as a major cause. The aim of this study was to evaluate potential factors that could increase the risk of a post-operative anastomotic stricture. METHODS: The records of 165 patients who had gastric bypass from June 2006 to March 2011 were reviewed. Demographics, co-morbidities, smoking status, surgical approach, medication use, and H. pylori status were noted, as well as a diagnosis of gastrojejunal stricture and/or marginal ulceration. RESULTS: Thirty-four symptomatic patients (21%) developed gastrojejunal stricture, while 26 patients (16%) developed marginal ulceration. The majority were women (89%) with a mean age of 43 years and mean body mass index of 51 kg/m2. Caucasians were at a higher risk for developing a stricture. Proton pump inhibitor use and marginal ulceration were significantly associated with risk of stricture, and there was a strong trend in patients with obstructive sleep apnea. Post-operative strictures were successfully treated with an average of two dilation sessions using an endoscopic through-the-scope balloon dilator. CONCLUSION: After gastric bypass, proton pump inhibitor use and marginal ulceration were associated with anastomotic stricture formation. Strictures were more common in Caucasians. A trend towards an increased risk of strictures in patients with sleep apnea was observed, supporting the role of ischemia. Endoscopic balloon dilation relieved symptoms in all patients.


Obesity; Bariatric surgery; Gastric bypass surgery; Gastrojejunostomy; Anastomotic stricture; Endoscopy

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