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Gastric sleeve surgery

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Gastric sleeve surgery is meant for weight loss. Your stomach is cut from one side and it’s shrunk just to a sleeve- the newly formed tube shaped stomach that resembles a banana, as defined by doctors. Thus, when your stomach is small you eat loss less and subsequently you lose weight. Furthermore, the levels of hunger hormone- ghrelin responsible for making you feel hungry are reduced.


Who needs gastric bypass surgery?

Gastric bypass surgery is not for everyone striving towards losing weight. It’s not an instant solution. Your doctor might consider performing this type of surgery only:

If your BMI is greater than 40 and you are severely obese, i.e. weight more than 100 pounds your normal weight and you have failed to shed the extra weight despite exercising, dieting or trying other natural forms of weight loss measures.

If your BMI is 35 or more and you are at risk or have some major health complication like heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, hypertension, etc. then your doctor might consider performing the surgery after weighing these parameters.


How is gastric sleeve surgery performed?

Traditional techniques involving large cuts and incisions are usually not opted for by doctors unless the patient is not the right candidate for laparoscopy.

Doctors resort to laparoscopy to perform gastric sleeve surgery. A small incision is made on the skin through which your stomach is operated with the help of surgical tools and laparoscope. The stomach is resectioned and a small tube or sleeve is created. The remaining stomach is discarded.

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How to prepare for gastric sleeve surgery?

Your doctor will evaluate your health and check your vital parameters before the surgery. Let your doctor know if you are taking medicines, have a history of health complications like GERD, bleeding problems, heart disease, etc. or are allergic to anaesthesia etc.

Your doctor will ask you to stop smoking a month before. You will also be given a pre operational diet that you have to follow.

Dosage of medicines like blood thinners might be stopped before surgery. Secondly, have your dinner early and do not eat or drink anything after midnight if your surgery is scheduled the next day.


What happens during the surgery?

Gastric sleeve surgery is performed under general anesthesia so you won’t be experiencing any sort of pain. The surgery takes about an hour.


What to expect after the surgery?

You need to stay in the hospital for 2-3 days during which your doctor will monitor your body’s response and vital signs as well. Your stomach might pain for a week and you will be given pain killers for a certain period.

Since the size of the stomach is reduced, it will to fill up quickly and you are most likely to experience frequent bowels. Diarrhea, weakness, nausea and fainting are some post operative symptoms.

The most important part is the post operational diet – during the first 24 hours you have to drink only water then you will be asked to consume clear liquids followed by purees and soft proteins in the subsequent weeks (tentatively in week 2 or 3). Once your body has recovered and the organs are stable then your doctor will re formulate your diet with healthy balanced food that will suffice for your nutritional demand.

It takes about 4-6 weeks for complete recovery. You must follow the instructions given by your doctor regarding your lifestyle, diet and physical activity in order to maintain your weight.


Risks of gastric sleeve surgery

Some risks include post operative infection, malnutrition, osteoporosis, respiratory problems, pulmonary embolism etc. in the long run.

Written by: healthplus24.com team
Date last updated: October 28, 2014

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