Gastric Sleeve Gastrectomy

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Gastric Sleeve Gastrectomy

Gastric sleeve gastrectomy is a medical procedure designed to promote weight loss by removing a portion of the stomach, eventually reducing it to just 25% of its original volume. In common parlance, it is typically referred to as “stomach stapling” since reducing the size of the stomach is often accomplished with staples. Nowadays, the procedure is done using laparoscopic methods because of the lower amount of stress that it imparts to the patient.

In the spectrum of weight loss procedures classified according to extent and invasiveness, gastric sleeve gastrectomy lies somewhere in the middle making it one of the more popular options for weight loss. The fact that this procedure is irreversible remains to be the biggest concern among patients and doctors, although over time this perception is significantly altered in favor of effective weight loss and the promotion of better health.

Gastric sleeve gastrectomy works because reducing the effective stomach volume leads to a forced reduction in the amount of food that a patient can consume. The smaller the food portions, the less carbohydrates and calories are taken into the body. This leads to weight loss as the body is forced to burn its own fat reserves to supply the daily energy requirement of the patient.

From this, it is apparent that there are significant lifestyle changes that will have to be made following gastric sleeve gastrectomy. First, the size of the food portions is the most apparent. Next, the frequency of eating also changes as smaller portions mean the patient will have to eat more frequently to obtain energy from food. There may also be restrictions on the types of food that can be eaten in order to make sure that cases of indigestion do not occur.

Consequently, doctors always warn patients of the potential complications that can arise from gastric sleeve gastrectomy. First, the danger of infection and leaking is real and should be monitored while the surgery wounds are still healing. This means that the patient is not allowed to eat hard foods while the stomach has yet to fully heal. Beyond this, the risk of malabsorptive conditions is also a concern. Changing one’s diet and reducing the portion sizes may lead to the body not absorbing certain nutrients and this can lead to certain types of illnesses that have to be monitored and mitigated through other means, epecifically daily vitamins.

Overall, however, the success rates of gastric sleeve gastrectomy in many patients exemplify its utility as an effective weight loss procedure. Patients are advised to take careful notes of all the complications in order to fully understand the risks that they are taking. Still, properly informing the patients coupled with regular consultation is often enough to offset the risks and allows patients to achieve the weight loss that they have long wanted to attain.

The caveat is to properly assess whether a patient really wants a gastric sleeve gastrectomy or if less invasive and reversible procedures will work as a substitute. With a lifetime commitment in the offing associated with this procedure, all efforts should be taken to understand the implications before deciding to have a gastric sleeve gastrectomy performed.