Vive Bariatrics

Gastric Sleeve Surgery: Everything You Need to Know

Gastric sleeve surgery, also known as sleeve gastrectomy, is one of the most effective and popular weight loss surgeries available today. At VIVE Bariatrics, we specialize in this life-changing procedure, helping patients achieve significant and sustained weight loss. This comprehensive guide covers everything you need to know about gastric sleeve surgery, from the procedure itself to the benefits, risks, and recovery process.

What Is Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

Gastric sleeve surgery is a minimally invasive bariatric procedure that involves removing a large portion of the stomach, creating a tube-like “sleeve.” This significantly reduces the stomach’s capacity, limiting food intake and promoting weight loss.

How Does Gastric Sleeve Surgery Work?

1. Reduces Stomach Size

During the surgery, approximately 75-80% of the stomach is removed, leaving a smaller, banana-shaped stomach. This drastically reduces the amount of food you can consume at one time.

2. Decreases Hunger Hormones

The surgery also removes the part of the stomach that produces ghrelin, the hormone responsible for stimulating appetite. This reduction in ghrelin levels helps decrease hunger and cravings.

3. Promotes Faster Fullness

With a smaller stomach, you will feel full more quickly and stay full longer, which helps you eat less and lose weight.

Benefits of Gastric Sleeve Surgery

1. Significant Weight Loss

Most patients lose 60-70% of their excess weight within the first year after surgery. This substantial weight loss can lead to improved overall health and quality of life.

2. Improvement in Obesity-Related Conditions

Gastric sleeve surgery can help resolve or improve many obesity-related health conditions, including type 2 diabetes, hypertension, sleep apnea, and joint pain.

3. Minimally Invasive

The procedure is performed laparoscopically, meaning it involves small incisions and a faster recovery time compared to traditional open surgery.

4. No Foreign Objects

Unlike gastric banding, gastric sleeve surgery does not involve implanting any foreign objects in your body, reducing the risk of complications related to implants.

5. Long-Term Success

With proper diet and lifestyle changes, the weight loss achieved through gastric sleeve surgery can be long-lasting.

The Gastric Sleeve Surgery Procedure

1. Consultation

Your journey begins with a thorough consultation at VIVE Bariatrics. During this visit, our team will assess your health, discuss your weight loss goals, and determine if gastric sleeve surgery is the right option for you.

2. Preoperative Preparation

Prior to surgery, you will undergo several tests and evaluations to ensure you are a suitable candidate. This may include blood tests, imaging studies, and a psychological evaluation. You will also receive detailed instructions on how to prepare for the procedure, including dietary guidelines and pre-surgery restrictions.

3. Anesthesia

On the day of surgery, you will receive general anesthesia to ensure you are comfortable and pain-free during the procedure.

4. Surgical Technique

The surgeon makes several small incisions in your abdomen and inserts a laparoscope (a small camera) and surgical instruments. They then remove approximately 75-80% of the stomach, creating a smaller, tube-like stomach. The incisions are closed with sutures or staples.

5. Postoperative Care

After surgery, you will be monitored in the recovery area until the effects of anesthesia wear off. Most patients stay in the hospital for 1-2 days before being discharged.

Recovery After Gastric Sleeve Surgery

1. Immediate Postoperative Care

You will need to follow a specific diet plan, starting with clear liquids and gradually progressing to pureed and soft foods. Your surgeon and dietitian will provide detailed guidelines to ensure proper healing and nutrition.

2. Managing Discomfort

It is normal to experience some pain and discomfort after surgery. Your surgeon will prescribe pain medication to manage this. Walking and light activities are encouraged to promote circulation and prevent blood clots.

3. Follow-Up Appointments

Regular follow-up appointments are essential to monitor your progress, adjust your diet plan, and address any concerns. These visits help ensure you are on track to achieve your weight loss goals.

4. Long-Term Lifestyle Changes

Successful weight loss after gastric sleeve surgery requires a commitment to long-term lifestyle changes. This includes adopting a healthy diet, regular exercise, and possibly participating in support groups or counseling.

Risks and Considerations

1. Surgical Risks

As with any surgery, gastric sleeve surgery carries risks such as infection, bleeding, and adverse reactions to anesthesia. Choosing an experienced surgeon can help minimize these risks.

2. Nutritional Deficiencies

Because the surgery reduces the stomach’s capacity, you may be at risk for nutritional deficiencies. Taking prescribed supplements and following a balanced diet is crucial for maintaining good health.

3. Potential Complications

Potential complications include leakage from the staple line, blood clots, and gastroesophageal reflux. Regular follow-up visits help detect and manage any complications early.

4. Weight Regain

While gastric sleeve surgery is highly effective, it is possible to regain weight if you do not adhere to the recommended lifestyle changes. Long-term success depends on your commitment to maintaining healthy habits.

Is Gastric Sleeve Surgery Right for You?

Gastric sleeve surgery is suitable for individuals who:

  • Have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 40 or higher, or a BMI of 35-39.9 with obesity-related health conditions.
  • Have not been able to achieve significant weight loss through diet and exercise alone.
  • Are committed to making long-term lifestyle changes.
  • Do not have any medical conditions that would contraindicate the surgery.

A thorough consultation with a skilled surgeon at VIVE Bariatrics will help determine if gastric sleeve surgery is the right option for you.


Gastric sleeve surgery offers a life-changing solution for individuals struggling with obesity and related health conditions. At VIVE Bariatrics, our experienced team is dedicated to providing comprehensive care and support throughout your weight loss journey. Schedule a consultation with us today to learn more about how gastric sleeve surgery can help you achieve a healthier, happier