During the procedure about 85% of the left side of the stomach is removed, leaving only a thin tube-like sleeve of stomach about the diameter of your index finger. The sleeve is similar in shape to a hot dog. Removing most of the stomach limits the amount of food you can eat and helps you feel full quicker.
The portion of the stomach that is removed also normally produces a hunger hormone known as ghrelin. Removing this portion of your stomach decreases this appetite-stimulating hormone and as a result generally decreases appetite. Because there are no further anatomical rearrangements, the sleeve allows for normal digestion and absorption. Unlike other procedures that rearrange the intestines, with the sleeve there is minimal risk of patients developing protein and vitamin deficiencies.
The gastric sleeve is a tool to level the playing field in your struggle against obesity, but it is not a stand-alone cure. You can generally expect to lose 60-80% of your unhealthy body weight over about a year*. However, when patients do not use surgery in conjunction with all of the other tools that we recommend (such as eating a healthy diet and regular exercise), weight loss may be slower. Patients may even regain weight over time.
Surgery takes approximately 45 minutes. This may vary based on your past surgical history and anatomy. The typical hospital stay is generally a night or two. This procedure is almost always done laparoscopically through four or five small incisions in the abdomen but can also be completed using a single site surgical approach. Laparoscopic surgery generally results in a shorter hospital stay, faster recovery, smaller scars, and less pain than open surgical procedures.
Most surgical procedures cause some level of pain. We use a variety of innovative techniques to reduce or even eliminate post-surgery pain.
Surgery patients should take a complex multivitamin as well as 1200 mg of calcium daily. Look for a calcium supplement that also has vitamin D. A vitamin B12 supplement is very beneficial, as well. Take two of your multivitamins daily. In the first few weeks after surgery it is preferable to use soluble or chewable multivitamins. Our dietitian will recommend few brands for you.
Gastric sleeve surgery typically takes around one hour to complete and is performed under general anesthesia. You may need to stay in the hospital for two to three days following the procedure.
Recovery time varies from patient to patient but most are able to resume their normal routine one week after the procedure. For the first four weeks, patients must adhere to a liquefied/pureed food diet before transitioning to soft foods. Most patients are able to resume eating solid foods six weeks after surgery.
Sleeve gastrectomy, also called a vertical 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.