The vertical sleeve gastrectomy, also known as the sleeve gastrectomy or gastric sleeve, restricts the amount of food you eat by reducing the size of the stomach. The minimally invasive procedure removes a portion of the stomach, making the stomach roughly the size and shape of a banana.
Patients who have a sleeve gastrectomy feel full after eating much less. In addition, the surgery removes the portion of the stomach that produces a hormone Ghrelin that can make you feel hungry, so you won’t want to eat as much.
This procedure can be an excellent alternative to gastric bypass or gastric banding. Sleeve gastrectomy is a simpler operation than the gastric bypass procedure because it doesn’t involve rerouting or reconnecting the intestines.
Also, unlike the gastric banding procedure, the sleeve gastrectomy does not require implanting a banding device around a portion of the stomach.
We will help you determine whether sleeve gastrectomy is appropriate for you and exactly how it will be performed. In most cases, the sleeve gastrectomy is performed as a single weight-loss procedure, as an alternative for patients who prefer not to have a gastric band implanted and who want a non-reversible solution to their obesity.
Advantages of Sleeve Gastrectomy
- Fewer food intolerances than with gastric banding.
- Weight loss generally is faster with the sleeve than with gastric banding.
- There is no implantable band device, so slippage and erosion are not a risk.
- The surgical risk is lower than with gastric bypass procedures, but the weight loss is similar. In addition the sleeve gastrectomy can be performed using minimally invasive techniques that help speed recovery time.
- No device that needs adjustment is inserted, so the follow-up regimen is not as intense as it is with gastric banding.
Disadvantages of Sleeve Gastrectomy
- Sleeve gastrectomy is not adjustable or reversible.
- Complication risks are slightly higher than with the gastric band.
- Standard risks associated with surgery
- Leakage at the suture site
- Blood clots
- Hospital stay averages 48-72 hours
- Most patients return to normal activity within two weeks
- Full surgical recovery usually occurs within three weeks