Jefferson University Hospitals

Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy

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Jefferson's Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery Program in Philadelphia offers a range of fully laparoscopic procedures, including the laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy.

What Does Sleeve Gastrectomy Involve?

Sleeve gastrectomy resects the portion of the stomach that makes ghrelin, a hormone that signals hunger to the brain. Approximately 70 to 80 percent of the stomach is removed while creating the new smaller stomach in the shape of a "sleeve." The sleeve has some specific benefits that gastric bypass does not. For example:

  • The path of food through your body is not changed. The part of the stomach removed is the part that normally stretches to make room for big meals.
  • The part of the stomach that is removed is where chemicals are made that tell your brain that you are hungry (even when you may not need to eat). This results in a decrease in hunger since the amount of these chemicals reaching your brain is less.
  • Average weight loss after sleeve gastrectomy is 55 percent of excess weight, which is slightly less than gastric bypass.
  • Improvement in diabetes, hypertension and sleep apnea occurs at a lesser rate than with gastric bypass.

Reduced Risks of Long-Term Complications with the Sleeve Gastrectomy

Sleeve gastrectomy was approved only recently by insurance companies after years of availability as a backup procedure. Long-term U.S. data now has proven this procedure safe and highly effective.

There is a reduced risk of long-term complications with the sleeve gastrectomy. While you may develop reflux symptoms after sleeve gastrectomy, we can treat this with antacids.

However, since there is no foreign body (band), there is no risk of implant-related complications (band infection, slip, breakage or band erosion). Further, since there is no intestinal bypass, there is less risk of internal hernia formation, malabsorptive problems or ulcers.