Sleeve gastrectomy, also called as gastric sleeve, is a type of bariatric [weight loss] surgery in which the goal is to help the patients feel fuller much sooner even with a small intake of food. In essence, it reduces the stomach that its size is almost the same as an average banana.
As with any weight loss surgery, sleeve gastrectomy is not a quick fix solution for obesity. According to California Surgical Institute website, it still remains the primary responsibility of patients to stick to a healthy lifestyle—specifically regular exercise and balanced diet—to make the procedure a success.
Aside from healthy lifestyle, these are the other factors you have to consider prior to sleeve gastrectomy:
* You have tried non-surgical means to lose weight but to no avail.
Any form of weight loss surgery is seen as a last resort to achieve healthy weight because it always involve potential risks, although these can be avoided or at least minimized through proper surgical planning and post-op care.
* Your body mass index falls under the category of obese.
Gastric sleeve is reserved for male patients who are more than 100 pounds overweight or 80 pounds overweight for women, according to the National Institute of Health. It is important to note that obese individuals suffer from a wide range of health problems such as diabetes, stroke, heart disease, cancer, and even premature death.
* The surgery involves weeks or even months of preparation.
To reduce the risk of bleeding and longer recovery, you will be asked to stop taking aspirin, ibuprofen, and other blood-thinning meds at least three weeks before your sleeve gastrectomy.
Your doctor will also put you on a strict diet and instruct you to avoid smoking and alcohol well in advance of your surgery to minimize the risk of complication.
* Nutritional counseling and behavioral therapy are crucial factors to increase the success rate of your sleeve gastrectomy.
Experts have suggested that unhealthy eating habits are often caused by emotional issues and “unhealthy” views on food, making nutritional counseling and behavioral therapy an important tool to make weight loss surgery a success.
* Drastic weight loss often results in redundant skin, although plastic surgery can help correct most of the deformity.
Despite the appearance of fat rolls and redundant skin, the benefits of weight loss surgery far outweigh any cosmetic-related problem. Nevertheless, plastic surgery procedures such as extensive tummy tuck, lower body lift, arm lift, and liposuction for “debulking” are known to help patients achieve a near normal appearance.