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August 14, 1967

Intestinal Bypass for Obesity

Author Affiliations

Buena Park, Calif

JAMA. 1967;201(7):562-563. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03130070082033

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To the Editor:—  In the May 15 issue (200:638), in an editorial on "Complications of Intestinal Bypass for Obesity," a rather discouraging picture was painted about the outcome and complications of these operations. The original article in question, in the May issue of the Archives of Surgery (94:707), goes as far as to conclude that, "at the present time we cannot advocate the use of intestinal bypass procedure as a routine operation for the control of human obesity". I heartily agree with their conclusion, but I am quick to point out that perhaps therein lies the problem with their complications, and the key word here is routine. No operation should be routine; one does not do a routine gastric resection or a routine vagotomy-pyloroplasty. After adequate evaluation, the operation is tailored to the patient and not vice versa. In the words of Dr. J.H. Payne, who has done