Vertical sleeve gastrectomy has most often been done on people who are too heavy to safely have other types of weight-loss surgery. Some people may eventually need a second weight-loss surgery.
During vertical sleeve gastrectomy (also referred to as gastric sleeve surgery), the surgeon removes about 3/4 of the stomach. As a result, patients lose weight because they cannot eat as much food. The procedure does not require open surgery; it can be performed laparoscopically through small incisions in the abdomen.
This procedure may be recommended if you have:
- A body mass index (BMI) of 40 or more. Someone with a BMI of 40 or more is at least 100 pounds (45 kilograms) over their recommended weight. A normal BMI is between 18.5 and 25.
- A BMI of 35 or more and a serious medical condition that might improve with weight loss. Some of these conditions are obstructive sleep apnea, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.
How Does Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy Work?
Vertical sleeve gastrectomy is not a quick fix for obesity. It will greatly change your lifestyle. The new, smaller stomach is about the size of a banana. It limits the amount of food you can eat by making you feel full after eating small amounts of food.
What Are the Advantages?
- Average percent excess weight loss is 50-60%
- Lower risk of mineral or vitamin deficiencies
- No risk of internal hernias
- It is safer procedure than the RNYGB or the DS
What Are the Disadvantages?
- Not reversible
- Lower weight loss than RNYGB or DS.
- Can cause increased reflux/heartburn (15%) and food intolerances.
- Risk of weight regain about 25%
Risks for vertical sleeve gastrectomy are:
- Gastritis (inflamed stomach lining), heartburn or stomach ulcers
- Injury to your stomach, intestines or other organs during surgery
- Leaking from the line where parts of the stomach have been stapled together
- Poor nutrition, although much less than with gastric bypass surgery
- Scarring inside your belly that could lead to a blockage in your bowel in the future
- Vomiting from eating more than your stomach pouch can hold