"Not all surgeons can do bypasses," he said. "Maybe they don't have the skills or the experience, but in any case it's not the best option because they are not up to it," he said. "That's the case for many surgeons."
In addition, it is not clear what the long-term results of a bypass are, because there is evidence that although a bypass "cures" diabetes, it does come back after time, Himpens said.
"The bypass is a very good procedure, but not everyone can do it and we have to be very careful and watch what the long-term effects of the procedure are," he said.
Also, while a gastric bypass causes changes in metabolism, banding does not, Himpens said.
"But the good thing is that it is reversible. When you take out the band, no harm has been done and you can still do another procedure if you need to," he said.
However, among patients who receive bands, only 40 percent retain them after 10 years, either because of complications or the desire to have it removed, Himpens said.
For more on gastric bypass procedures, visit the U.S. National Library of Medicine.
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