What is a Sleeve Gastrectomy?
A Sleeve Gastrectomy (or gastric sleeve) is an operation to reduce the size of the stomach. This is achieved by stapling the stomach along its length and removing the excess portion, leaving a long tube or sleeve.
Although the shape of the stomach is drastically changed it continues to function normally, albeit the quantity of food consumed will be considerably less.
The gastric sleeve works in three ways. Firstly, it is a restrictive procedure, meaning that it achieves weight loss by restricting the amount of food that can be eaten. It also works because it removes the part of the stomach that produces the hormone Ghrelin, which is the hormone that stimulates appetite and hunger. The elimination of Ghrelin results in a significant reduction or loss of appetite. In addition, rapid transit of food from the ‘new’ stomach into the small bowel releases incretins (hormones that work to increase insulin secretion) that inhibit calorie intake.
Is a Sleeve Gastrectomy suitable for me?
The gastric sleeve is an excellent choice of treatment if your BMI is over 35 and you have been able to lose weight in the past, but have found it impossible to maintain that loss in the long term.
Why might I choose a Sleeve Gastrectomy for my weight loss procedure?
A gastric sleeve may be suitable option if you find it very hard under any circumstances to maintain discipline with your diet and you would like a long term surgical option, but you don’t want an implanted device such as a gastric band.
The gastric sleeve is a long term procedure and is irreversible. It is one of the few surgeries that can be performed laparoscopically on patients who are extremely overweight. Unlike other weight loss treatments it is suitable for people with inflammatory bowel disease. A gastric sleeve requires little in the way of follow up visits or further intervention so it is ideal for people with very busy lifestyles and for those who are less mobile.
Treatment is carried out under general anaesthesia in an operation that takes between 60 and 90 minutes. The procedure is performed via 5 small incisions on the abdomen. A stapling device is used to remove up to 80%* of the volume of the stomach, to leave a slender tube that maintains the natural openings to and from the stomach. After a 2 night stay in hospital you will be discharged to recover at home. Because no surgery is performed on the intestines, the digestive system functions normally.Unlike patients who have had a gastric bypass, gastric sleeve patients do not suffer from severe vitamin deficiencies, food restrictions or malabsorption.
* results may differ from person to person and wont be the same for everyone.
You will follow a liquid only diet for the 2 weeks following your surgery. You will gradually progress to blended then soft foods and then on to normal foods in small portions. You are advised to take 2 weeks off work to ensure that you heal as quickly as possible.
You will have lots of support during this time. Our medical team will guide you through your dietary requirements and out support team will be on hand to keep you motivated and help you address any issues you may have. They will give you an unlimited amount of support for the full 12 months following your procedure.