Have you tried to lose your belly fat, but to no avail? Have all the diets and workouts failed to put you at a healthy weight? If so, gastric sleeve is a type of bariatric surgery, otherwise referred to as weight loss surgery, that can help to rid your body of the excess pounds.
Gastric sleeve (sleeve gastrectomy) is a type of bariatric (weight loss) surgery. We sometimes refer to this surgery as vertical sleeve gastrectomy or VSG.
The surgery is designed to restrict your food intake, which in turn leads to rapid weight loss. Patients who undergo the surgery and are 100 pounds overweight can lose as little as 50 pounds and as much as 80 pounds once the full effects of the gastric sleeve are realized.
The surgery involves the removal of much of your stomach, whereby a small portion or “sleeve” will be left for food to traverse its way to the intestines. The anatomy is minimally modified and the flow of food is not interrupted. The surgery focuses on minimizing the excess stomach that is often used for overeating and storage of food. The stomach will appear like a banana. The food you eat will then empty into the bottom part of the stomach and into the intestines the same way as it did before surgery. It does not affect or alter the small intestine at all. By eliminating the excess stomach it decreases your hunger through neurohormonal pathways and restricts the amount of food you can eat at any one time.
After surgery, not only will you find yourself eating less, but you won’t find yourself feeling deprived. Instead, you will feel fuller faster, leading to rapid and comfortable weight loss.
Since your stomach is now restricted, which has the effect of lowering your daily caloric intake, you can expect to lose weight fairly quickly. In fact, gastric sleeve patients tend to lose up to 60-80% of their extra weight over 12 to 18 months. That means that, for someone 100 pounds overweight, you can expect to lose around 60 to 80 pounds over the next year. You can potentially lose even more weight by exercising and eating healthily. This restriction comes with a fairly strong decrease in appetite.
Gastric sleeve has the amazing side benefit of helping with a variety of medical conditions that often go hand-in-hand with severe obesity, such as asthma, arthritis, obstructive sleep apnea, gastroesophageal disease, high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure. It also breaks the cycle of depression and social anxiety that obesity may impose on your life. One surgery with so much powerful effect.
Dr. Moein uses gastric sleeve to treat severe obesity. As such, the surgery is reserved for patients who have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher. That number signifies that the patient is around 100 pounds over their ideal weight. To put this into perspective if you are 5 foot 3 inches and you weigh 225 lbs, then you have 100 extra weight.
Dr. Moein may recommend the surgery for you if you have tried other weight loss methods without long-term success.
In some cases, Dr. Moen will recommend a gastric sleeve if your BMI is between 35 and 40. However, he will usually only do so when there is an accompanying obesity-related medical disorder, such as sleep apnea, heart disease, high blood pressure, or type 2 diabetes.
Although new guidelines have clearly shown benefit at lower BMI range between 30 to 35, insurance will not cover such procedures. American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric surgery has announced these new guidelines for the performance of Sleeve Gastrectomy in lower BMI patients. Unfortunately, the surgery is still considered cosmetic in nature and will only be covered as cash or by financing.
For patients who are too heavy for gastric bypass surgery, gastric sleeve seems to be a suitable alternative also Overall gastric Sleeve surgery has become the #1 best choice operation that is a safe and superior treatment for the majority of obese patients.
With your new lifestyle habits and with the weight rapidly dropping off, you will begin to feel more energized and prepared to get the most out of life.
If you have tried everything to lose weight, including diet and exercise, then gastric sleeve can give you the boost you need. The surgery makes it possible to lose up to 60% of your excess weight within a single year of surgery.
If you are experiencing fatty liver disease, joint pain, hypertension, or other health problems related to your excess weight, then gastric sleeve can improve them or put them into remission entirely.
The primary effect of gastric sleeve surgery is to force your body to consume fewer calories. With most of your stomach safely removed, you will find yourself eating less. You will feel less hungry and, when you do eat, you’ll feel more satiated quickly.
Many patients find it hard to eat a healthy diet because they are always hungry. With the gastric sleeve, hormonal changes occur as a direct effect of the surgery. These hormones regulate hunger, which means they will be significantly reduce your hunger sensations, making it much easier to adopt your new lifestyle habits.
We use general anesthesia for a gastric sleeve, which means that you will be asleep for the duration of the procedure.
During the surgery, which lasts about an hour, your surgeon will place a few small cuts in your belly. The surgeon will then insert a laparoscope, which is an instrument with a camera that sends images to a monitor, into one of the newly placed incisions. The surgeon will insert other medical instruments through additional cuts.
The surgery involves the use of a laparoscopic stapler to divide the stomach. About 3/4 of the stomach is then removed. This leaves behind a narrow vertical “sleeve” around the size of a banana.
The portion of the stomach that was removed is taken out of the abdomen through one of the incisions. Your surgeon will then test for leaks in the sleeve using a dye study or upper endoscopy.
Before undergoing a gastric sleeve, you will have already been evaluated by Dr. Moein, which includes a full assessment of your health, diet, and exercise backgrounds. Dr. Moein will only recommend gastric sleeve if it makes sense given your body type and weight loss struggles and goals.
Before surgery, Dr. Moein will ensure that you are on board with the lifelong changes in diet and exercise that you have to adopt for a surgery like the gastric sleeve to be effective.
Dr. Moein will also enroll you in a bariatric surgery education program, which covers surgery preparation and the lifestyle habits you should adopt post-surgery to experience the most success. So that you adopt the best habits, the program also contains a nutritional counseling course.
In some cases, Dr. Moein will recommend a psychological evaluation and blood tests, as well as imaging studies of your stomach, to ensure that you are ready for surgery and so that the surgery has the best chances for success.
If you are a smoker, Dr. Moein will recommend that you stop several months prior to surgery. In some cases, the doctor may ask you to lose some weight before surgery. Doing so will make your liver smaller and the procedure much safer.
You will also need to stop taking ibuprofen, aspirin, and other blood-thinning medicines in the days leading up to your surgery. And, as with most surgeries, you should refrain from eating or drinking anything the night before.
We will enroll you in our online nutritional and exercise program to help guide your choice with an easy application that easily allows you to navigate your choices through your smartphone.
Some people go home the day after surgery, while we recommend others to stay in the hospital for two or three days. The effects of the procedure are permanent. Dr. Moein will instruct you on how to treat your new constricted stomach and how to navigate the various positive changes to your lifestyle moving forward.
We designed our fast track program for folks that are healthier. It will allow you to undergo surgery with a short period of education and testing. Most patients in this program will have their surgery done in a surgery center and go home the same day.
Dr. Moein will usually recommend regular blood tests every few months in the year following surgery. This ensures that you don’t develop low blood iron (anemia), low vitamin D levels, low calcium, or high blood glucose. Your PCP can monitor these parameters but the chances of you developing major deficiency with the gastric sleeve are low because the operation does not significantly impact absorption.
If you have heartburn, Dr. Moein may recommend medicine to reduce stomach acid.
While weight loss can be rapid, it is possible that you regain some of the weight you lost. To avoid weight regain, make sure you follow Dr. Moein’s diet and exercise suggestions.
The gastric sleeve can widen over time, allowing you to eat a bit more. Keep in mind that overeating can cause you to regain some of the weight. Joining a weight loss surgery support group can help you stick to your new lifestyle habits and weight loss goals.
One of the things Dr. Moen will cover is diet and how to eat with your gastric sleeve in place. The day after surgery, you will be instructed to drink clear liquids only.
By the time you leave the hospital, you will have graduated to eating pureed foods and drinking protein shakes, whereby you will continue this dietary routine for about four weeks.
You should pay attention that you will have to alter the way you consume foods forever. After the first month, you will switch to eating solid (softer) foods. For the best results, make sure you eat slowly and chew your food thoroughly, and never drink while you eat. Doing so can cause your stomach to overfill.
When drinking liquids, wait for a half-hour after finishing a meal.
Dr. Moein also recommends that you refrain from taking in any calorie-laden sodas and snacks.
He will encourage you to take a vitamin and mineral supplements daily to aid with nutrient absorption.
In two or three months, you will have moved on to regular meals. It will become very apparent that you can no longer consume as much food as you could in the past.
As with any surgery, there risks of a gastric sleeve, such as infection, bleeding, and leakage at the staple line, though these are rare. Another rare condition that can develop includes a blood clot that forms in your legs.
General anesthesia can cause breathing problems or other reactions, but only in some patients.
Tell Dr. Moein if you experience nausea, constipation, heartburn, or vomiting, as these side effects can sometimes occur as a result of surgery.
You are also likely to notice that some foods may no longer agree with you. Some patients develop nutrition problems after surgery, which is why Dr. Moein recommends vitamins and mineral supplementation.
For all side effects and unintended consequences of surgery, Dr. Moein will be sure to advise you on exactly what you need to heal correctly and experience the highest levels of (safe) weight loss.
The cost of a sleeve gastrectomy varies depending on your location. Bariatric surgery in California tends to cost less than the national average. As far as weight loss surgeries go, sleeve gastrectomy is substantially more affordable than others like gastric bypass.
The average cost of the surgery is $23,00. Ask Dr. Moein to give you a customized and specific quote to help you achieve your weight loss surgery goals. We do our best to provide you with complete pricing without surprises in a comprehensive program.
Some insurance policies cover bariatric surgery if you meet specific criteria. You have a higher likelihood of having your surgery covered by your insurance provider if you have a BMI over 40 or your BMI is between 35 and 40 with obesity-related health problems. The insurance criteria are often very restrictive and will result in months of delay to your care. In addition, your copay and out of pocket expenses may exceed the cost of your surgery. We will provide you with insurance verification and provide you with the best resources to achieve your surgery.
While a gastric sleeve is not intended as a quick or permanent fix for obesity, the procedure can help you drop the excess pounds that don’t respond readily to diet and exercise.
Compared to other bariatric procedures, the gastric sleeve is more conservative and shorter than a traditional gastric bypass.
Dr. Moein recommends the gastric sleeve for all patients in the greater Los Angeles, Glendale, and Encino areas with a BMI of 30 to 60 or higher. The surgery can help you reduce your weight and resolve accompanying health problems caused by morbid obesity.
Learn more about the potential benefits of sleeve gastrectomy bywith Dr. Moeinolmolki at Healthy Life Bariatrics in Los Angeles, California.