Gastric Sleeve Review

A gastric sleeve, also known as a sleeve gastrectomy, is a newer yet popular type of weight loss surgery. It is done by removing part of the stomach and creating a sleeve where the food will go when digested. This helps the patient feel fuller faster and for longer periods of time, resulting in weight loss from eating a lower quantity of food. Unlike some of the other types of surgeries, the gastric sleeve is not reversible, so it is a lifelong commitment. Most gastric sleeves are performed laparoscopically with a hospital stay of 2-3 days and recovery time of 2-4 weeks. While the weight loss in gastric sleeve tends to be slower than gastric bypass, it has better long-term results in many cases.

U.S. National Library of Medicine Study
The U.S. National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health performed a study that compared different weight loss procedures, including the gastric sleeve, adjustable gastric banding and gastric bypass procedure. This study was originally performed to look at how effective overall each of these weight loss surgeries was in compared to each other. It looked at patients who were morbidly obese and got one of these procedures to help lose weight. They checked in with patients 1, 2 and 3 years after surgery looking at their overall weight loss, quality of life, remission of co-morbidity and any complications they experienced. As expected, there was less weight loss overall with gastric sleeve patients because it is considered more of a long-term weight loss solution, rather than a quick weight loss solution. However, the gastric sleeve data also showed there were fewer complications with only 6.3 percent of the patients than with the adjustable gastric banding procedure, which had 10 percent complications. About 60 percent of the patients who got gastric sleeve surgery had excessive weight loss.

Henry Ford Health Systems Study
Another gastric sleeve study that provides excellent information was done by Henry Ford Health Systems, looking at the results of this type of weight loss surgery. In summary, the results found that there was great long-term success, very few complications and better quality of life for these patients. Overall, they found the gastric sleeve procedure to have a better safety profile than other weight loss procedures, which is partly due to the fact that the weight comes off more gradually following this procedure. These patients also had a better quality of life because they have fewer dietary restrictions, with a smaller amount of the stomach being limited, as opposed to gastric bypass. This makes a big difference for patients of weight loss surgery, as how they live and what they can eat makes an impact in the type of procedure they will choose.

Surgery for Obesity and Related Diseases Study
Finally, there is the study conducted by Surgery for Obesity and Related Diseases, looking at how successful gastric sleeve surgery is at helping patients keep the weight off long-term. This study looked at post-surgery results of patients who had the sleeve gastrectomy for a total of five years. Like others studies mentioned, it looked at the total weight loss and how quickly the pounds came off, the quality of life, complications or morbidity for the patients. They went based on the body mass index (BMI) of patients to keep the numbers fair and comparable. There were 68 patients in this study that began as morbidly obese patients wanting to get a gastric sleeve procedure. The study ran from 2004 to 2007. Among the participants, 78 percent were female and an average of 43 BMI. The average amount of excessive weight loss for participants of this study was 61.5 percent after one year and 61.1 percent after two years. The average for a total of five years was 57.4 percent. Along with successful weight loss, patients reported co-morbidity improving, including type 2 diabetes that went into remission.

Benefits of Gastric Sleeve Procedures
One similarity these studies and others like it show is that gastric sleeve is for long-term weight loss results. It is no surprise that patients getting gastric bypass or other weight loss surgeries lose an excessive amount of weight very quickly, but they also have more limitations than with the sleeve gastrectomy. Gastric sleeve patients choose the more gradual approach, with a less invasive surgical procedure, but one that is highly successful in not only losing the weight they hope to shed, but keep it off for a longer period of time. Their benefits range from weight loss and maintaining that weight loss, to learning how to eat healthier and smaller quantities of food, getting regular exercise and improving a wide range of medical conditions. They include high cholesterol, cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure and even helping to cure their Type II Diabetes.
The studies listed in this review of gastric sleeve procedures give definitive proof of the success of this procedure as a weight loss surgical option.