What is Gastric Sleeve?
Gastric sleeve, also called sleeve gastrectomy, is a surgical weight-loss procedure. This procedure is typically performed laparoscopically, which involves inserting small instruments through multiple small incisions in the upper abdomen. During sleeve gastrectomy, about 80 percent of the stomach is removed, leaving a tube-shaped stomach about the size and shape of a banana.
Limiting the size of your stomach restricts the amount of food you are able to consume. In addition, the procedure prompts hormonal changes that assist with weight loss. The same hormonal changes also help relieve conditions associated with being overweight, such as high blood pressure or heart disease.
The purpose of gastric sleeve is to help you lose excess weight and reduce your risk of potentially life-threatening weight-related health problems, including:
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Heart disease
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- Type 2 diabetes
When is Gastric Sleeve needed?
Sleeve gastrectomy is typically done only after you’ve tried to lose weight by improving your diet and exercise habits.
What should you know before undergoing Gastric Sleeve?
Not everyone can safely undergo this procedure.
In general, sleeve gastrectomy surgery could be an option for you if:
- Your body mass index (BMI) is 40 or higher (extreme obesity).
- Your BMI is 35 to 39.9 (obesity), and you have a serious weight-related health problem, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure or severe sleep apnea. In some cases, you may qualify for certain types of weight-loss surgery if your BMI is 30 to 34 and you have serious weight-related health problems.
You must also be willing to make permanent changes to lead a healthier lifestyle. You may be required to participate in long-term follow-up plans that include monitoring your nutrition, your lifestyle and behavior, and your medical conditions.
What are the complications and side effects?
Infection, bleeding, and in rare cases, a leak along the staple line are possible. Right after the surgery, you may have nausea, vomiting, or constipation.
You may experience changes as your body reacts to the rapid weight loss in the first three to six months after sleeve gastrectomy, including:
- Body aches
- Feeling tired, as if you have the flu
- Feeling cold
- Dry skin
- Hair thinning and hair loss
- Mood changes
It is important you understand the precautions and know the possible complication and side effects before having this Gastric Sleeve. If you have any questions, please consult with your doctor or surgeon for more information.
How do I prepare for Gastric Sleeve?
Before your surgery, give your doctor a list of all medicines, vitamins, minerals, and herbal or dietary supplements you take. You may have restrictions on eating and drinking and which medications you can take.
If you take blood-thinning medications, talk with your doctor before your surgery. Because these medications affect clotting and bleeding, your blood-thinning medication routine may need to be changed.
If you have diabetes, talk with the doctor who manages your insulin or other diabetes medications for specific instructions on taking or adjusting them after surgery.
You’ll be required to start a physical activity program.
You’ll be required to stop any tobacco use 12 weeks before surgery and may be tested for nicotine prior to your surgery.
You may also need to prepare by planning ahead for your recovery after surgery. For instance, arrange for help at home if you think you’ll need it. People who have a sleeve gastrectomy are typically off work for four weeks.
What happens during Gastric Sleeve?
Sleeve gastrectomy is done in the hospital. The surgery takes about an hour. Depending on your recovery, your hospital stay may last one to two nights.
Before you go to the operating room, you will change into a gown and will be asked several questions by both doctors and nurses. In the operating room, you are given a general anesthetic before your surgery begins. The anesthetic is medicine that keeps you asleep and comfortable during surgery.
The specifics of your surgery depend on your individual situation and the hospital’s or doctor’s practices. Some sleeve gastrectomies are done with traditional large (open) incisions in the abdomen. But sleeve gastrectomy is typically performed laparoscopically, which involves inserting small instruments through multiple small incisions in the upper abdomen.
The surgeon then creates a narrow sleeve by stapling the stomach vertically and removing the larger, curved part of the stomach.
What happens after Gastric Sleeve?
After surgery, you awaken in a recovery room, where medical staff monitors you for any complications.
You’ll have frequent medical checkups to monitor your health in the first several months after weight-loss surgery. You may need laboratory testing, bloodwork and various exams.
Sleeve gastrectomy can provide long-term weight loss. The amount of weight you lose depends on your change in lifestyle habits. It is possible to lose approximately 60 percent, or even more, of your excess weight within two years.
It’s possible to not lose enough weight or to regain weight after weight-loss surgery. This weight gain can happen if you don’t follow the recommended lifestyle changes. If you frequently snack on high-calorie foods, for instance, you may have inadequate weight loss. To help avoid regaining weight, you must make permanent healthy changes in your diet and get regular physical activity and exercise.
It’s important to keep all of your scheduled follow-up appointments after weight-loss surgery so your doctor can monitor your progress. If you notice that you aren’t losing weight or you develop complications after your surgery, see your doctor immediately.
If you have any questions or concerns, please consult with your doctor or surgeon for more information.
What should you do after Gastric Sleeve?
After sleeve gastrectomy, your diet begins with sugar-free, noncarbonated liquids for the first seven days, then progresses to pureed foods for three weeks, and finally to regular foods approximately four weeks after your surgery. You will be required to take a multivitamin twice a day, a calcium supplement once a day, and a vitamin B-12 injection once a month for life.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Sleeve gastrectomy. https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/sleeve-gastrectomy/about/pac-20385183. Accessed June 20, 2018.
What Is Gastric Sleeve Weight Loss Surgery? https://www.webmd.com/diet/obesity/what-is-gastric-sleeve-weight-loss-surgery#1-3. Accessed June 20, 2018.
COST OF GASTRIC SLEEVE (SLEEVE GASTRECTOMY) SURGERY. https://obesitycoverage.com/insurance-and-costs/how-much/average-cost-of-gastric-sleeve-surgery. Accessed June 20, 2018.
Review Date: September 7, 2018 | Last Modified: September 7, 2018