The Sleeve Gastrectomy (Gastric Sleeve) is a newer procedure that has been evaluated as a primary treatment in bariatric surgery since 2004. The Gastric Sleeve involves permanently removing 85% of the stomach's volume. The resulting tubular stomach offers restriction in portion size. Removing a portion of the stomach reduces your appetite.
The operation under the general anesthesia lasts about two hours, and usually patients are able to go home on the second post-op day. Return to work is generally 1 to 2 weeks post op. As the stomach heals, there is a diet progression from liquids, to pureed, to soft and then to regular food. Pills need to be chewable or in liquid form for 2 weeks post-op.
The studies available are limited, but the average weight loss is 55% to 60% of the excess body weight at five years post-op. With this operation, patients only need to avoid anti-inflammatory medications, such as ibuprofen or steroids, for one month. The procedure is less invasive than the Gastric Bypass, but more so than the Gastric Band.
The possible risks of Gastric Sleeve surgery may include reflux, nausea, stable line leak, stricture (a narrowed area in the stomach) and bleeding. Interventions are used to decrease the likelihood of complications. The rish for fatal outcome is low, but long-term data is not yet available.