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Benefits of Gastric Sleeve Gastrectomy

Posted on 08 Feb, 2024
Benefits of Gastric Sleeve Gastrectomy

The gastric sleeve is the most common weight loss procedure performed across the globe - in the US alone, more than half of all bariatric operations are sleeve gastrectomies. 

Designed specifically to treat obesity, the benefits of gastric sleeve surgery go beyond effective weight loss. Where conventional weight loss methods like dieting, exercise, and modified eating habits have been futile, gastric sleeve surgery has been shown to provide rapid (but healthy) weight loss, reversing and reducing the risk of chronic health conditions often associated with morbid obesity; including type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, and high blood pressure. 

In short, the main benefit of gastric sleeve surgery is that when performed, patients are offered a new lease on life.

What is Gastric Sleeve Surgery? 

Gastric sleeve surgery, or sleeve gastrectomy, is a surgical procedure that involves the removal of part of the stomach, reducing its size by about two thirds. The resulting shape of the stomach resembles a slim “sleeve” that holds less food and becomes full sooner. 

Post-surgery, gastric sleeve surgery patients will experience significant weight loss over the next few weeks and months as a direct result of a) the smaller stomach sleeve, and b) the removal of ghrelin, the hunger-stimulating hormone. 

Who is it Suitable For?

It’s true that it’s one of the more effective weight loss procedures, but it’s also not available to everyone who wants to lose weight. To be a suitable candidate for gastric sleeve surgery, you need to be :

  • Be 16 years of age or older 
  • Have obesity-related health issues or are facing a high-risk of developing them
  • Have a excess body weight of 45kg or above 
  • Have a BMI of 35 or higher, 30 if you are affected by an obesity-illness such as diabetes or hypertension
  • Have made earnest attempts at losing weight through conventional weight loss techniques (dieting, regular exercise)
  • Not be pregnant or planning for pregnancy 6-12 months after surgery. 
  • Have no drug-dependencies

The criteria above are used as a general guideline to determine your suitability for gastric sleeve surgery, but each patient will be given ample consideration on a case-by-case basis by the surgeon and weight loss clinic.

What are the Benefits of Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

Evidently, weight loss is the main benefit that patients can expect from gastric sleeve surgery. There are plenty of studies on this procedure that show that those who undergo gastric sleeve surgery can lose up 80% of their excess body weight. 

But that’s not all — a sleeve gastrectomy also offers other significant benefits for those who are seeking a solution to the problems that come with being severely overweight. 

Rapid weight loss solution

A large portion of the weight loss that is experienced post-surgery will usually happen within the first 6 months. Straight after the operation, patients of gastric sleeves can start to see their body weight fall within 1 week of the procedure, at a rate of 1-2 kg per week. This consistent weight loss will continue for up to 12 months, which is when most patients achieve their ideal body weight or weight loss goals.

Permanent, long-term solution

Unlike conventional weight loss methods where lost weight can be gained back quickly, the gastric sleeve surgery procedure is designed to provide lasting weight loss. The reduced stomach size drastically changes the amount of food you consume, helping you to retain the effects of your weight loss for years to come. Not to mention, during the operation, the ghrelin hormone is removed, which is responsible for the feeling of hunger.

Fight cravings with surgery

We all get cravings - it’s only human to crave your favourite fast foods, sugary treats, or supermarket snacks.

The beauty of gastric sleeve is that it will change your appetite, which means that you’ll no longer feel these cravings to the same extent. And even when you do indulge, you’ve only got so much room in your stomach, so you’re not going to over-indulge, so you can enjoy them in more moderate amounts without impacting your weight. 

That’s not to say that you don’t need to follow a balanced diet - successful weight loss will only be achieved if you implement healthy eating habits. 

Mitigate risk of lifestyle diseases

Weight loss isn’t just about improving your body image, it’s also about keeping your body healthy. With a healthier BMI after gastric sleeve surgery, you’ll be less susceptible to obesity-related illnesses and other debilitating health issues such as heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and cancer. 

Improve your quality of life

At the end of the day, a healthy body and lifestyle will offer a higher quality of life. Not only are you likely to live longer, but the biggest benefit of sleeve gastrectomy for weight loss is that you’ll be able to do the things you love without being limited by your body weight. 

As you move closer toward your ideal weight, you’re naturally going to be feeling happier about yourself and gaining a more positive outlook on your life and future. 

Are There any Risks with a Gastric Sleeve?

As with any medical procedure, there are always risks, even when performed by skilled and experienced surgeons. Your doctor is obliged to inform you of risks such as bleeding, internal organ damage, and infections for your own safety. 

Before and after the procedure, your surgeon will take the time to carefully explain them to you and provide you with clear instructions on how to reduce these risks. Do follow these instructions and attend all follow-up appointments so that your doctor can monitor your progress. 

Who is the Right Candidate for a Gastric Sleeve?

Gastric sleeve surgery is a big step towards effective weight loss, but it’s important to carefully consider both the benefits and risks before making a decision. Having the right mindset is a critical part of how successful gastric sleeve surgery can be. 

You’ll certainly have a headstart, but you’ll still need to be diligent in cultivating healthy eating habits and keeping up an active lifestyle to maintain your weight loss results post-surgery. Instead of thinking of gastric sleeve surgery as a one-and-done procedure, it’s better to treat it as a way to kickstart your journey toward lasting weight loss. 

So, is a sleeve gastrectomy the right weight loss solution for you? The best way to find out is to have a consultation with a qualified surgeon. Dr Ken Wong at Central Coast Surgery, can help you better understand the benefits of gastric sleeve surgery in Newcastle. Contact our friendly team to book a consultation appointment today!