What Is a Sleeve Gastrectomy?
Sleeve gastrectomy, also known as vertical sleeve gastrectomy, is a surgical weight-loss procedure. During this procedure, about 80% of the stomach is removed and the remaining stomach forms a narrow tube called a sleeve. This way, less food will make you feel more full when eating.
The Sleeve Gastrectomy procedure is available as part of our Weight Loss & Bariatric Programme, that includes an optional 6 month support package post surgery, to ensure you have the best opportunity to reach your weight loss goals.
Why Is the Surgery Done?
Sleeve gastrectomy is usually done to treat morbid obesity by restricting the amount of food you can eat. Typically, the procedure is applied in order to reduce the risk of potentially life-threatening weight-related health problems.
Who Is the Surgery Recommended?
Sleeve gastrectomy normally only recommended for people suffering from morbid obesity that have tried other weight loss methods unsuccessfully. The following conditions are required to qualify for the procedure:
- BMI 40 or higher.
- Obesity-associated serious health problems
- No history of gastrointestinal diseases.
- Commit to healthy lifestyle changes.
Benefits and Potential Results
This procedure can be a very effective long-term way to lose weight, depending on how much you change your lifestyle habits. Sleeve gastrectomy can result in losing 20 to 40 kilos of excess weight within the first two years.
Additionally, it may also improve or even reverse some health conditions related to being overweight, including:
- Heart diseases
- Sleep apnea
- Osteoarticular diseases
Since the sleeve gastrectomy involves major surgery, there are some possible risks related to this procedure.
Some of the risks associated with the surgical procedure itself include:
- Blood clots
- Breathing problems
- Gastrointestinal leaks
Long-term post surgery complications include:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Gastroesophageal reflux
- Bowel obstruction
In order to be selected as a valid candidate for the procedure, your doctor might require some lab tests. Also, you need to inform them about your regular medication (blood-thinning, hypertension or diabetes medication) since there will be some restrictions on which you can take, as well as what you can eat and drink before the procedure.
Sleeve gastrectomy is now typically performed using a minimally-invasive laparoscopic technique. The procedure involves the following steps:
- After making several small incisions in your abdomen, the surgeon will insert the laparoscopic instruments.
- The doctor will cut vertically your stomach, removing and curving part of it to create a narrow sleeve.
- As a result you will feel full sooner during your meals.
You will be sleeping under general anesthesia and monitored closely for any complication. The whole procedure will take a few hours.
Immediately after the procedure, you won’t be allowed to eat or drink for about 8 hours. After that, your diet will include only sugar-free liquids for the next week, progressing gradually to pureed food and finally to regular food around four weeks after surgery. You are likely to be at the hospital for at least 2-4 days. Your doctor will recommend certain vitamin and mineral supplements after your surgery. You will require a vitamin B-12 injection once a month for life.