Refractory strictures after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass: Operative management

Daniel Cusati, Michael Sarr, Michael Kendrick, Florencia Que, James M. Swain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Background Stricture of the gastrojejunostomy after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) is common in the early postoperative period, with a reported incidence of 327%. Late recalcitrant strictures are much less common. Treatment has varied from endoscopic therapy to operative revision of the gastrojejunostomy with or without additional anatomic revisions. The origin of the late strictures varies, with the most common causes being excessive acid, aspirin, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug use, postoperative anastomotic leak, or, as some have maintained, smoking. We sought to identify the predictors of gastrojejunostomy strictures that require operative management after RYGB and to evaluate the clinical outcomes of patients requiring operative revision of the gastrojejunostomy stricture after failed nonoperative therapy at an academic institution. Methods A retrospective review was performed of all patients undergoing operative intervention for gastrojejunostomy stricture from 1990 to 2009 after having undergone RYGB for medically complicated obesity. Results A total of 24 patients required revision of their gastrojejunostomy stricture after multiple attempts at nonoperative therapy. The mean interval from RYGB to reoperation was 4.3 years (range .525). The interval to operative revision for anastomotic stricture was substantially less in patients with active anastomotic ulcers (n = 6), those who had had a gastrojejunostomy leak after RYGB (n = 5), and those with gastrogastric fistulas (n = 7; 20, 23, and 44 months, respectively). Of the 24 patients, 23 experienced relief of their symptoms. The postoperative morbidity rate was 21%, and the mortality rate was 0%. Conclusion Operative revision of strictured gastrojejunostomy is a safe and effective procedure for those patients in whom endoscopic therapy has failed. Most refractory anastomotic strictures have been secondary to excessive acid (too large a proximal pouch), chronic ulceration, or postoperative anastomotic leak.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)165-169
Number of pages5
JournalSurgery for Obesity and Related Diseases
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2011


  • Gastric bypass
  • Revision
  • Stricture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


Dive into the research topics of 'Refractory strictures after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass: Operative management'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this