The laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy – often called the sleeve – is performed by removing approximately 80 percent of the stomach through small incisions. The remaining stomach is a tubular pouch that resembles a banana.


The Procedure

The sleeve gastrectomy is performed using a minimally invasive technique, with several small incisions and a long camera. The stomach is mobilized and the surgeon will use a surgical stapler to remove 80% of your stomach, leaving a small remaining pouch.

This procedure works by several mechanisms. First, the new stomach pouch holds a considerably smaller volume than the normal stomach and helps to significantly reduce the amount of food (and thus calories) that can be consumed. The greater impact, however, seems to be the effect the surgery has on gut hormones that impact a number of factors including hunger, satiety, and blood sugar control.

Short term studies show that the sleeve is as effective as the roux-en-Y gastric bypass in terms of weight loss and improvement or remission of diabetes. There is also evidence that suggest the sleeve, similar to the gastric bypass, is effective in improving type 2 diabetes independent of the weight loss. The complication rates of the sleeve fall between those of the adjustable gastric band and the roux-en-y gastric bypass.


Benefits of gastric sleeve surgery:

  • It’s quicker and technically easier than gastric bypass surgery.
  • It results in an average of 60% excess weight loss.
  • More weight loss than Lap Band and slightly less than gastric bypass.
  • Reduces hunger.
  • Does not produce dumping syndrome like gastric bypass.
  • Does not require band adjustments like Lap Band surgery.
  • Weight loss is rapid. The majority of weight loss occurs in the first year after surgery.


Complications of gastric sleeve surgery:

  • Leak from the surgical staple line
  • Narrowing of the remaining stomach, requiring revision/ more procedures
  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Blood clots
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Gallstones
  • Heartburn