Frequently Asked Questions About Gastric Sleeve Surgery

June 28, 2015 — by Fernando Garcia
Tags: Gastric Sleeve Faqs

A man at a computer smilingMany patients visit Dr. Fernando Garcia at his Tijuana practice because he provides ample information with regard to all bariatric procedures.

With this in mind, we'd like to take this opportunity to answer some of the most common questions that patients have about gastric sleeve surgery (sleeve gastrectomy).

What is gastric sleeve surgery?

Gastric sleeve surgery is a bariatric procedure that involves making a person's stomach smaller. This helps reduce sensations of hunger while also limiting the amount of calories that a patient consumes. This will result in safe and healthy weight loss.

Who is a good candidate for gastric sleeve surgery?

Good candidates for gastric sleeve surgery include people who are obese and morbidly obese, generally with a BMI greater than 40. They should have tried losing weight through normal means but have found that they are unable to achieve a healthier BMI. Patients who are at risk for heart disease or suffer from diabetes are good candidates for the procedure.

What are the benefits of gastric sleeve surgery?

The benefits of gastric sleeve surgery include the following:

  • Relatively quick surgery
  • Less invasive than some other bariatric procedures
  • Low maintenance when compared to other bariatric procedures
  • High rate of success and patient satisfaction
  • Able to prevent cardiovascular disease and treat diabetes

How does gastric sleeve compare to gastric bypass?

Gastric sleeve compares favorably to gastric bypass surgery. The amount of weight loss that each surgery can achieve is comparable, though the gastric sleeve procedure does not involve a major alteration to the patient's digestive tract, which makes it more appealing to some.

How does gastric sleeve compare to gastric banding?

In addition, gastric sleeve compares favorably to gastric banding/LAP-BAND surgery. Again, the amount of weight loss that can be achieved with each surgery is comparable, but the gastric sleeve does not require band adjustments or checks as the LAP-BAND procedure does.

How will my diet change after gastric sleeve?

In the early weeks after gastric sleeve, you will be on a predominantly liquid and soft foods diet, gradually incorporating more and more solid foods as you heal. Patients should avoid carbonated beverages after gastric sleeve surgery, as well as coffee and anything that is high in sugar or fat.

This grocery list for gastric sleeve surgery patients will be helpful for figuring out what you should be eating in those first weeks of recovery.

How soon will I lose weight after gastric sleeve is performed?

Patients will notice some significant weight loss by the end of the first month, typically around 20 pounds. After a few months, the weight loss should continue, usually with another 40 to 60 pounds lost, though this can vary from patient to patient based on their starting weight and other factors.

This timeline for gastric sleeve weight loss should provide a helpful guideline of what to expect.

Will I gain weight back after gastric sleeve?

It is possible to gain back some weight following the initial amount of weight loss you experienced, and this is normal in many cases. The weight regain will not lead you back into obesity or morbid obesity, however.

There may be different reasons why you are not losing weight after gastric sleeve surgery, so keep those matters in mind.

Will insurance cover a gastric sleeve procedure?

Your medical insurance can be used to pay for gastric sleeve surgery, though since policies and plans differ, it's important to check with your insurance provider directly to find out what is involved. For people without insurance, there are a number of financing options for gastric sleeve surgery that can prove quite helpful for putting your weight loss goals within reach.

Should I consider medical tourism for a gastric sleeve surgery?

Yes.

At our practice, patients will experience savings but without any reduction in terms of the quality of care that is provided. We offer patients a private driver to get to and from the surgical facility as well as hotel accommodations following surgery to aid in recuperation.

How can I learn more about gastric sleeve and other weight loss surgeries?

For more information about gastric sleeve and other bariatric procedures, we encourage you to contact our weight loss surgery center today. Dr. Garcia and his team will be more than happy to answer any additional questions that you may have.