Sleeve gastrectomy

What is it?

Sleeve gastrectomy drawnThe sleeve gastrectomy is a weight loss surgery procedure which is becoming increasingly popular worldwide.  The floppy left side of the stomach which produces hormones that make you feel hungry is removed.

What does the surgery involve?

The procedure is performed using keyhole (laparoscopic) techniques under general anaesthetic and usually lasts between 1 to 2 hours.  The longer, floppier left hand side of the stomach is loosened from its blood vessel attachments and is removed using stapling devices that seal off the cut edge with triple layers of staples over a Teflon seal.  This leaves a thin tube of stomach down to a small normal pouch that is left near the outlet (pylorus).  Not only does this make the stomach smaller but it also results in removal of cells that produce hormones that affect appetite so that patients are less hungry.

Banded sleeve gastrectomy

The “banded” sleeve operation is an experimental technique.  The initial surgery is the same as the typical procedure.  However, in a small step a thin band is placed around the stomach sleeve.  Through a combination of pressure and preventing those pouches from increasing in size it is felt that these increase the overall weight loss and make it last longer.  Experience with gastric bypass procedures has suggested that these benefits are at the expense of a slightly more severe restriction on eating and a minor incidence of problems caused directly by the pressure of the band.

How well will I do?

Patients would be expected to lose about 25% of their overall weight by 2 years.  Differences from other procedures include: no artificial device (like the band), no alteration of the small bowel (like the bypass) and it is permanent (the sleeve of stomach is removed completely).  The procedure may be safer and simpler than a bypass in patients with extreme weight issues or where the small bowel is affected by other conditions such as Crohn’s disease or a hernia.  Your surgeon will discuss possible complications as part of your preparation.  Recent studies have suggested excellent short and medium term outcomes for the management of type 2 diabetes.

What is my recovery like?

Patients would be expected to remain in hospital for 1 or 2 nights.  There will be structured dietary advice and you will be advised to take only liquids through a straw for the first 2 weeks.  Most patients will usually return to desk jobs in about 4 weeks and more active work at 6 to 8 weeks.  Often patients take 2 or 3 weeks until they feel able to drive again, as guided by DVLC advice.  The first band fills are in 4 weeks after surgery

Packages and prices

Gastric sleeve packages are offered in partnership with BMI Healthcare.  The BMI Healthcare website should be consulted for any price or package changes and the following is a description at the time of writing only.  The package price includes consultation with the dietitian and surgeon, pre-assessment and anaesthetic assessment, the procedure and associated hospital stay, the management of any problems in the first 30 days after the procedure and regular consultations with the dietitian and surgeon after the procedure.  The follow-up package lasts for one year.

  • Initial BMI Healthcare Bariatric Enquiry Centre appointment with dietitian                  £50
  • Psychology assessment                                                                                            £220
  • Laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy package (BMI <50kg/m2)                         from £9,995
  • Laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy package (BMI <50kg/m2)                         from £10,995