Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy
Sleeve Gastrectomy is a weight loss surgery that is restrictive in nature. With this procedure, a smaller stomach is created by removing a portion of the stomach, leaving only a banana shaped stomach. There is no intestinal re-routing or bypass with this procedure. The decreased size of the stomach causes a feeling of fullness as soon as capacity is reached. This is a signal to stop eating. The restriction of food, in combination with changes in dietary habits and level of physical activity, promote weight loss.
- Laparoscopic procedure
- Less post-operative pain
- Minimal scarring
- Shorter hospital stay
- Reduction of possible complications
- Faster recovery
- Resolution of comorbid conditions in 12 to 24 months after surgery
- Resolution rates for type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and sleep apnea similar to results of other restrictive procedures.
- Improved physical functioning
- Improved physical appearance
- Overall improved quality of life
- Not cosmetic in nature
- Requires lifelong commitment
- Involves both risks and benefits
- Vitamin/mineral supplementation
- Potential for open procedure
What to Expect
This surgery usually involves a two night hospital stay. Most people return to their normal activities in 2 to 3 weeks.
Sleeve Gastrectomy does not result in malabsorption but people having this surgery are encouraged to take iron and B12 supplements. Weight loss is slower than with the gastric bypass but faster than with the banding procedure.
Exercise is integral to weight loss success, especially in the maintenance period. Prior to having surgery, people should develop an exercise regimen to assist in their weight loss.
Psychological support is important throughout the weight loss phase. People considering sleeve gastrectomy should attend a support group to assist them in adjusting to the changes in their life after surgery
At this time, the Sleeve Gastrectomy is NOT covered by most insurance companies. We are able to verify your insurance coverage and specifications for surgery prior to your initial consult. Please call our office with your insurance information if you are interested in determining your coverage/benefits for weight loss surgery.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Who is a candidate for sleeve gastrectomy surgery?
- You must be 18 years of age or older
- Your Body Mass Index (BMI) must be greater than 35 kg/m2 (approximately 80 pounds over ideal body weight) with significant medical conditions directly related to or influenced by your obesity; or your Body Mass Index must be greater than 40, with or without any medical conditions directly related to or influenced by your obesity.
- You have been morbidly obese for at least 5 years
- You have tried and been unsuccessful with medically supervised diets
- You are prepared to make substantial changes in your dietary intake, eating habits, and level of physical activity
- You are willing to commit to regular follow-up visits with your surgeon and the multidisciplinary team
- How long will I be out of work after surgery?
- Patients typically return to work in approximately 2-3 weeks.
- The time you will need to recover may vary based on the type of physical activity involved in your employment.
- How much weight can I anticipate losing?
- Weight loss is dependent upon various factors, including pre-operative weight, adherence to dietary recommendations, and ability to incorporate physical activity into your daily lifestyle.
- Weight loss is slower than with the gastric bypass, but tends to be faster than with the gastric banding procedure. Overall weight loss is comparable to gastric banding.
- Does sleeve gastrectomy surgery require frequent follow-up to my surgeon?
- Follow-up is scheduled at regular intervals after surgery to assess your weight loss, change in co-morbid conditions, ability to advance and tolerate your diet, to provide continued psychological support, and to provide continued nutritional counseling.
- Will I be sick a lot after the surgery?
- The sleeve gastrectomy will limit the amount of food you are able to eat prior to feeling full. If you are nauseated, it may actually indicate that you are hungry and need to eat. If you are experiencing vomiting, it may signal that you are either overeating or eating too quickly to experience the initial sensation of fullness. If you experience persistent nausea and vomiting, you should contact the surgeon for evaluation.
- How long will I be on a liquid diet after surgery?
- The day after surgery you will begin a clear liquid diet.
- The second day after surgery, your diet will be progressed to a full liquid diet.
- Two weeks later, you will progress to a pureed diet, then to a soft diet.
- The final phase of the diet will be when you begin to incorporate solid foods into your diet.
- Our program dietitian will work with you to advance your diet. It will be important to adhere to the recommended schedule for advancement to prevent any complications
- Will I need to take vitamins and supplements for life?
- It is recommended that you take a multivitamin, iron, and B12 following sleeve gastrectomy.
- Regular lab work will be ordered to monitor your levels and adjustment to your vitamin regimen will be made accordingly.
- Will I be able to take regular medications?
- Initially, all medications must be either crushed, liquid, chewable or spray form due to post-operative swelling.
- Extended release or sustained release medications should never be crushed or opened if in capsule form to prevent toxicity. Your pharmacist can tell you if any of your medications are extended/sustained release. You may need to request alternate dosing from your physician prior to surgery.
- NSAIDS and aspirin will cause irritation to the stomach and should be avoided after surgery. If you are in any doubt as to whether you should avoid a newly prescribed medication, please check with your surgeon.