Vertical Sleeve Gastroectomy

December 12, 2006 · Filed Under vertical sleeve surgery 

Vertical Sleeve Gastroectomy is becoming one of the newer popular weight loss surgeries.  It is less restrictive than some of the other weight loss surgeries, has no effect or change to the small intestine, and the recovery time is shorter.  To understand the difference between the vertical sleeve gastroectomy and the other weight loss surgeries, the following is a brief overview of other weight loss surgery procedures.

There are currently four main surgeries performed in the United States for weight loss at this time.  The first and probably most well known is the Rouy-en-Y Gastric Bypass.  This is both a restrictive and malabsorptive procedure.  The stomach is made smaller (approximately the size of a golf ball) and the small intestine is re-routed to cause malabsorption.  The portion of the stomach that is separated from the smaller pouch is left in the body and attached to the small intestine in the by pass portion of the surgery.  The Duodenal Switch surgery (also called biliopancreatic diversion) is similar to the Gastric bypass that it changes the size of the stomach and causes malabsorption.  In the Duodenal Switch, the stomach is reduced to the size and shape of a banana and the remaining stomach material is removed.  Then the small intestine is then re-routed to cause malabsorption.  The third surgery performed is the Adjustable Gastric Banding (also known as the Lap-Band).  In this surgery the upper portion of the stomach is sectioned off by the lap band which is a device designed to make the stomach pouch smaller and the band restricts food from passing into the bottom portion to help the patient feel full and not overeat.  Inside the band there is a balloon that is filled with saline which changes the speed at which the stomach pouch can release food.  The balloon fills are done through the skin through a port that takes saline to the balloon.

When surgeons began performing the Duodenal switch surgery for severely obese patients, they would sometimes break the surgery into two parts.  The first part of the process was to perform the Vertical Sleeve Gastroectomy and use this as a tool for the patient to lose a portion of his excess weight so that the second portion  re-routing of the small intestine could be performed later on a smaller sized patient for safety.  Many surgeons found that patients were losing significant amounts of weight without the  second part of the surgery, and there was born the fourth type of surgery the Vertical Sleeve Gastroectomy.  As a stand alone surgery the Vertical Sleeve Gastroectomy

is performed by sectioning one portion of the stomach with staples to the size of a banana and the remaining outer portion of the stomach is removed.  This restrictive procedure causes weight loss by limiting the amount of food the patient can eat.  The beginning capacity of the stomach after surgery is approximately ½ cup and eventually expands to accommodate approximately 1 cup of food.  Compare this to a stomach roughly the size of a football prior to the surgery and you can see how much less food can be eaten and a tool for weight loss is in place.  Most of the Vertical Sleeve Gastroectomy surgeries are performed laproscopically and the recovery time is much shorter than with the by-pass type surgeries.


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