Stomach and Weight Loss Surgery

Gastric pain, bloating and reflux are very common complaints. Some patients just use the word “gastric” to describe their discomfort. We will then evaluate them to check if the problem lies in the stomach, as there are many conditions which can have similar symptoms. Surgery can also be done on the stomach to bring about weight loss for those who are severely overweight.

The stomach is a bag-like organ with a thick muscular wall. When a person swallows his food, the food will move down the oesophagus (or gullet) before entering the stomach. The stomach secretes chemicals including acid and enzymes, which aid in the digestion of the food. The partially digested food is then released into the small intestine (duodenum). This is controlled by a sphincter, which regulates the release of food into the duodenum.


The stomach is an elastic bag. It can hold up to over 1.5L of food or drink. It produces hydrochloric acid to help in the digestion of food. The acidity is strong enough to dissolve most metals. Therefore, the stomach also has a protective function, since the acid can kill off certain bacteria and potential food toxins. The trade-off is that this acid can also lead to stomach ulcers.

Problems of the stomach or oesophagus may present with the following symptoms:
  • Abdominal pain; or “gastric pain”
  • Heartburn
  • Frequent sore throat or hoarseness
  • Coughing at night
  • Loss of appetite
  • Loss of weight
  • Feeling full after only a small amount of food
  • Bloating
  • Passing black sticky stools
  • Vomiting of blood
  • Difficulty in swallowing
  • Pain on swallowing
We highlight some of the common conditions here:

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