Gastric sleeve surgery, also known as sleeve gastrectomy, is a medical procedure carried out to help people who are overweight lose excess weight. During the procedure, a large part of the stomach is surgically removed. It's hard to tell exactly, but the capacity of the stomach is reduced to give or take 25% of what it was originally, prior to any surgery. The procedure is often referred to as gastric sleeve surgery because the remaining stomach is shaped like a sleeve after the operation. Long, and tubular, like a long-sleeve shirt. The surgery normally takes just over a half-hour at it's quickest, up to around two hours in some cases. The amount of time spend in the operating room all depends on many factors.
A gastric sleeve surgeon will perform the surgery while the patient is under general anesthetic. In most cases, the gastric sleeve surgeon will use a technique known as laparoscopic surgery. Laparoscopic surgery is done by introducing a camera, lighting, and surgical instruments through very small incisions. The gastric sleeve surgeon uses the camera to examine the patient's internal organs and to guide the surgical instruments.
There may be reasons why laparoscopic surgery is not possible. If that is the case, the procedure is carried out using open surgery. This involves the surgeon making a single large incision through which the procedure is carried out. This is more invasive surgery than laparoscopic surgery, so recovery from it takes usually longer than from laparoscopic surgery. Most surgeons realize the importance of minimally invasive surgery, and so are opting for the laparoscopic approach whenever possible, but of course they won't hesitate to change approaches if necessary, or for safety reasons, etc. Although this is rarely encountered, it's still a possibility and we want you to be informed.
If you are overweight and have tried unsuccessfully to lose the excess weight through dieting and exercise, or through other surgical procedures such as lap band surgery, gastric sleeve surgery may be an option for you. You will need to submit your medical information to find out if you are a suitable candidate, and our platform makes it really easy for you to do that.
Health Benefits of Gastric Sleeve Surgery
Gastric sleeve surgery is used to help people lose weight by restricting the amount of food they consume. When the stomach is reduced in size, people should not physically be able to eat as much as they could before the procedure. Furthermore, the removal of approximately three-quarters of the stomach reduces the production of the hormone that triggers the sensation of hunger. It's called "ghrelin", and it's produced by the very stomach tissue that's removed! Nearly magical, but it's science!
In most cases, people should quickly lose a significant amount of weight but a positive outcome is not guaranteed. While gastric sleeve surgery reduces the stomach's capacity, patients who have had the procedure will also need to be careful with their diet if they are to achieve significant weight loss. Even though they can eat less following surgery, patients who continue to eat foods that are high in sugar or carbohydrates may not achieve their desired weight loss goals. Furthermore, if you introduce the wrong foods to your diet regime too soon, you could do harm to yourself that the body will takes time to repair and heal from, if at all. So we cannot stress the importance to follow the guidelines and don't eat too soon so you don't create an opening, often dramatically referred to as "a hole", in your unhealed staple line at the surgical site of the stomach. The staples need time to scar-over internally and grow stronger. So please don't let people talk you into eating, and don't cheat your restrictions! One bite too soon, could be one too many and do damage. We really don't want this to happen to you and you need to commit to the guidelines but take the risk and responsibility that it's possible to develop a leak by this or for other reasons.
However, having said that, obesity can contribute to premature death. It is also associated with a number of health problems. Obese people are prone to developing type 2 diabetes. This is a potentially life-threatening condition that causes many adverse affects. It affects blood supply to the extremities. In severe cases, people may have to undergo amputations when blood can no longer reach certain body parts.
Obesity is often associated with dangerously elevated blood pressure, and this leads to a higher risk of heart attacks and strokes. Obesity can cause mobility problems. Mobility issues can also be the result of damage to the joints, particularly the knees and hips.
Studies have shown that when obese people get their weight down to an acceptable level, many of the health problems that obesity causes are greatly reduced or even eliminated altogether. For example, people with type 2 diabetes may have high blood sugar levels. When they reduce their weight to an acceptable level, the blood sugar levels can return to normal. Similarly, weight loss can result in blood pressure returning to acceptable levels. Gastric sleeve surgery contributes to weight loss, and the consequential health benefits associated with it. So, prospective patients should weight the benefits and the risks, and decide, together with their doctor, if surgery is worth it. It's too bad outcomes cannot be guaranteed, because we wish they could, but there are too many factors and variables to allow that to happen, even as a medical tourist dealing with highly trained professionals who are well trained and perform the gastric sleeve almost every day of the week.
Recovery from gastric sleeve surgery
As a medical tourist, you will generally have to stay in the clinic or hospital for two to three days after surgery. Patients staying locally may experience a shorter stay, also because they are expected to remain in the vicinity for full confidence for a swift and full recovery after surgery. You may feel pain or discomfort and possibly nausea following surgery, and prior to your discharge, medical staff may prescribe painkillers, antibiotics, and possibly other medication as indicated. You should take these as prescribed and not supplement with your own medication, or overdose, miss a dose, lose your doses, etc. Prior to being discharged, medical staff will tell you what you need to do, and what you need to avoid, to ensure that your recovery progresses well.
You will be placed on a special diet. It is also advised that you intake the proper foods and vitamin supplements your surgeon recommends. Initially, you will be able to take only clear liquids. You should progress soon enough and be able to introduce liquid foods like soups that have no solid chunks. Beyond that stage, you will be able to take pureed foods. From this point onwards, you can gradually introduce solid foods to your diet again. An exact plan should be provided or developed for you, based on your needs, your allergies, etc.
It is important to follow your post-operative regime to the letter. Eating solid foods too early can cause complications that may result in you needing to go to hospital again, and the price does not include fees or expenses due to complications after you've been cleared and discharged from your encounter.
You should also commit and remember to avoid strenuous work, or lifting heavy objects for at least four weeks after surgery, or longer, to help minimize certain risks.
What type of person is a good candidate for gastric sleeve surgery?
People who are morbidly obese should do whatever it takes to get their weight down to a healthier level. A morbidly obese person is one whose BMI is 40 or greater, or one who has a BMI of 35 or higher if that person also has associated health problems like type 2 diabetes. (Tip: If you aren't sure, you can quickly check your BMI with us if you know your weight and height, just give us a call.)
Anybody who has tried other means to lose weight without success may consider gastric sleeve surgery, but acceptance for surgery is not automatic. If you are not morbidly obese, or if you are too big for your doctor's comfort level or physical limitations of the surgical equipment, your doctor may ask you to try other methods of getting your weight down first. That means that if you are obese to the level that surgery may be too risky, your surgeon may ask you to lose some weight by other means before approving you for surgery. Some gastric surgeons will ask you to do this anyway to prove your commitment to leading a healthier lifestyle. There may also be health issues that make you ineligible for this surgery. For example, if you have a history of problems related to anesthesia, you may not be able to have the surgery. If you have a history or your family has history of cardiac issues, your cardiologist may be asked to sign off and stand by your decision to move forward.
You will also need to demonstrate that you are psychologically prepared for the major lifestyle changes you will need to make before and after surgery. That includes being willing to adopt a healthy diet, and to have a positive attitude toward exercise and general good health. If you locate a provider who is able to accept your medical insurance to pay for your procedure, your insurance is most likely going to require that you have a psychological evaluation done before granting approval.
You may also be declined for gastric sleeve surgery if you are currently abusing drugs or alcohol, or if you have certain psychiatric illnesses.
How much does gastric sleeve surgery cost?
The cost of gastric sleeve surgery will vary depending on several factors such as location and length of stay. The average cost of gastric sleeve surgery is about $15,000 elsewhere, sometimes double, but you can also locate some facilities who are considerably cheaper at less than a fourth of that cost, below $4000
Your medical insurance may pay all or part of the cost of having the procedure done. Some insurance providers will pay for gastric sleeve surgery provided that you use one of their approved medical service providers. You will need to check with your medical insurance to find out if the insurance will pay for your surgery, and then locate and be approved by a provider who accepts your insurance. Then finally get approved by your insurance company and jump through all the hoops needed, such as seminars, medical supervised weight loss, food logging, medical and non-medical attempts at weight loss, and a series of failures at that, and the list goes on. Not what most people want to hear or should need to endure.
Finding a Top Gastric Sleeve Surgeon
Your doctor may be able to recommend a local gastric sleeve surgeon to you. You can also search online or check local directories. If you know people who have had the procedure done, you can ask them to share their experiences.
When you find a surgeon or clinic that you like, do not be shy about questioning them about their experience carrying out the surgery. While complications can arise in any type of surgery, most of the complications that may arise during laparoscopic gastric sleeve surgery are down to the relative lack of adherence to the guidelines and failure to reduce risks. Take your antibiotics, dont eat solids too soon, stay hydrated, be aware of your protein intake, and the list goes on. Ask questions and learn what you need to make it a success.
In addition to the benefits, there are risks associated with weight loss surgery. To learn more about the risks, please click here
. Outcomes are not guaranteed and testimonials
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. If you would like to find out more about gastric sleeve surgery and whether it is a viable option for you, feel free to reach out to one of our weight loss success coordinators by calling us directly at (855) 753-3833. Here at Weight Loss Agents, the weight loss surgeons have experience carrying out lots of successful surgical procedures, with individualized attention and service, so you can be ensured you are in good hands.
You can also get the process started by filling out the contact form on this page or chat with one of our Live Chat Agents who are standing by to provide you with assistance. To learn about the providers and pricing for the gastric sleeve surgery, click here