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Gastric Sleeve Surgery is currently the most popular weight loss operation in the world and induces rapid and significant weight loss. Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy also called the sleeve involves removing approximately 80% of the stomach. The remaining stomach is a tubular pouch that resembles a banana.

Is Gastric Sleeve Surgery Right for Me?

Gastric Sleeve surgery can be a suitable weight loss treatment for patients who are not eligible for other surgical procedures due to risk factors associated with a high BMI or other medical conditions, such as anemia.

How Sleeve Gastrectomy Works

Due to a reduction in ghrelin, a hormone that affects appetite, patients are also less likely to feel hungry between meals.

This procedure works by several mechanisms. 

  • Restricts the amount of food the stomach can hold – the new stomach pouch holds a considerably smaller volume than the normal stomach and helps to significantly reduce the amount of food (and thus calories) that can be consumed. 
  • The greater impact, however, seems to be the effect the surgery has on gut hormones like Ghrelin, the hunger hormone, which favourably suppresses hunger, reduces appetite, improves satiety and improves blood sugar control.

Why Consider Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

Gastric Sleeve surgery has a number of advantages over other weight loss procedures. These are:

  • Digestion functions are maintained as the only change is made to the size of the stomach.
  • Stomach openings and nerves remain intact and unaltered.
  • The procedure for Gastric Sleeve surgery is laparoscopic, rather than open, meaning it is less invasive, scarring will be minimal, and recovery will be quicker.
  • As Gastric Sleeve surgery does not affect the digestive system, recovery times are slightly faster than in other procedures.
  • Lower chance of complications such as ulcers and other risks associated with gastric bypasses and lap-band surgeries.
  • Involves a relatively short hospital stay of approximately 2 days

If you have type 2 diabetes, evidence suggests that this should be easier to control.

The disadvantages of Sleeve Gastrectomy are the potential for long-term vitamin deficiencies, but this can be addressed by diet.