The laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy is an operation in which the left side of the stomach is surgically removed. This results in a new stomach that is roughly the size and shape of a banana. Since this operation does not involve any “re-routing” or reconnecting of the intestines, it is a simpler operation than the gastric bypass. Unlike the LAP-BAND® procedure, the sleeve gastrectomy does not require the implantation of an artificial device inside the abdomen.
Because the stomach smaller, persons feel full after eating a smaller meal. Also, the fundus of the stomach is removed. The fundus is the area that secretes ghrelin, a hormone that makes a person feel hungry. So, the sleeve gastrectomy may help persons feel less hungry through a hormonal mechanism.
Some of the benefits of the gastric sleeve:
- Gastric sleeve surgery lowers the “hunger hormone,” gherlin
- Gastric sleeve can be performed in 35 minutes, approximately
- 75 percent of the stomach is physically removed from the body
- The small intestine is kept intact
- Can be performed on high-risk patients, including those who have had prior surgeries
- No risk of “dumping” syndrome
- Entrance and exit of the stomach remain the same; they are not altered.
- Nutrients are absorbed normally
- Less risk ulcers and bowel blockage
- Excellent improvement or resolution of co-morbid conditions
- Covered by most insurance including Medicare
- Minimal time off work, usually about 5-7 days