All of our doctors are now offering virtual appointments! Please click here to schedule a virtual appointment with one of our surgeons.

The Gastric Sleeve is a restrictive procedure, meaning patients lose weight by limiting the amount of food they take in. There is no re-routing of the intestines and no change in the ability to absorb calories and nutrients such as iron, vitamin B-12, and calcium. Patients report a drastic decrease in hunger and an early feeling of “fullness” when they eat. The mechanism for weight loss is a decrease in calorie intake.

The Gastric Sleeve is performed laparoscopically, using special instruments that allow the surgeon to operate through 6-8 very small abdominal incisions. In this procedure a large portion of the stomach is removed, leaving a small tube shaped pouch. The capacity of the new stomach pouch is 3 to 4 ounces – larger than the stomach pouch created during Roux-en-Y gastric bypass and about the size of a banana.

Gastric Sleeve Surgery Results

Current evidence shows that the excess body weight loss at 12 months is 45% to 64%, with significant resolution of obesity related illnesses. Long term data (5 years or more) is not yet available, and there is still much research to be done.

Co-morbid condition resolution 12 to 24 months after sleeve gastrectomy has been reported in 345 patients. Sleeve gastrectomy patients experienced resolution rates for type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and obstructive sleep apnea that were similar to resolution rates for other restrictive procedures such as adjustable gastric banding.*

* American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. ASMBS Position Statement on Sleeve Gastrectomy as a Bariatric Procedure. 3 September 2007.

Potential Gastric Sleeve Patients Concerns

The operative complication rates are comparable to that of laparoscopic gastric bypass and include gastric leak, bleeding, infection, and blood clots that can lead to pulmonary embolism.

Long term complications that may require reoperation are less frequent than those for RYGB and adjustable gastric band.

Risks of nutritional deficiency are very low. Because there is no implant, as with the adjustable gastric band, there is no risk of mechanical failure, and the need for frequent follow-up adjustment visits is eliminated.