Sleeve gastrectomy gets its name from the shape of the post-surgical stomach. The bariatric surgeon removes about 80% of the stomach, leaving a sleeve-like stomach in its place. It’s an effective way to lose weight, given the substantial reduction in food the stomach is able to hold. However, no bariatric surgery should be considered a “magic bullet” solution, as patients must be committed to making significant lifestyle changes.
Won’t I be hungry all the time?
Given that sleeve gastrectomy drastically reduces the size of the stomach, one of the most common concerns patients have is about their appetites. Even though you’ll be eating much less food, you’ll feel full more quickly—so you’ll need less. Additionally, the bariatric surgery decreases the production of a key “hunger hormone.”
What will I eat?
Your weight loss surgeon will give you detailed instructions for your new diet. You’ll start out with clear liquids while you’re recovering in the hospital. Soon, you’ll be able to drink protein shakes and eat pureed foods. In about a month, you’ll switch to solid foods, but in much smaller portions than you used to eat. Remember to chew each bite very thoroughly, and don’t fill up on liquids during meals.
Do I have to quit smoking?
Yes, definitely. Surgery becomes far riskier when the patient is a smoker. There are heightened risks during the surgery itself, and smoking also interferes with the recovery process. Patients who smoke after surgery are at a higher risk of blood clots, infections, poor healing, and pneumonia.
Is sleeve gastrectomy safe?
All surgeries come with certain risks, such as the risk of adverse reactions to anesthesia and the possibility of surgical site infections. Sleeve gastrectomy isn’t any riskier than most surgeries, and it’s associated with a lower risk of complications than gastric bypass surgery. Before you decide to have it, you’ll need to carefully weigh the health risks of continued obesity with the risks and benefits of the surgery.
How much weight will I lose?
It isn’t possible to put an exact number on it, as every patient is a little different. The average sleeve gastrectomy patient loses about two to five pounds per week. Within six to 12 months, you can generally expect to lose about 70% of your excess body weight.
For the compassionate obesity help you deserve, contact Bariatric Care Centers and request a one-on-one consult with our weight loss surgeon in Houston. Our patients receive a complete support system, including extensive pre-and post-operative education. Call 713-339-1353.
Disclaimer: This is only for general information. All patients should consult their doctors prior to following any of the recommendations in any articles and videos. Every patient has individual needs and limitations that only their treating physicians can be aware of.