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Sleeve gastrectomy is a surgical procedure that is used in weight loss. This procedure involves the reduction of the size of the stomach to about 15% of its original size. Reducing the size of the stomach means that the individual would get filled up easily. The part of the stomach that physicians mostly remove is the portion along the greater curvature. This procedure is irreversible. However, there are chances that the stomach might increase in size as the years go by. Gastric Sleeve Surgery In Tijuana Mexico has been enjoying increasing popularity over the years.

What Is The Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

This procedure is designed for individuals that have tried other ways of weight loss but didn’t achieve any success. This includes physical exercise and changes in diet. It’s mostly done by individuals that are morbidly obese and needs some help in getting them back in shape. This article would focus on the various benefits and risks involved in undergoing this surgery.

How Is This Procedure Carried Out?

The gastric sleeve surgery has been gaining a lot of popularity in the past few years, especially in countries like North America, and Asia. Physicians carry out this procedure by resecting the greater curvature of the stomach. They remove some parts of the stomach and join the remaining parts together, which now changes the shape of the stomach to a banana-shaped figure. Patients do feel full quicker than before. This reduces the amount of food they consume significantly, and in the long run, helps them lose a lot of weight. In addition, the procedure also removes the portion of the stomach that produces the hormone that increases appetite.

Is The Gastric Sleeve Surgery Different From Gastric Bypass?

Although the gastric sleeve surgery and the gastric bypass surgery shares a lot of similarities, there are some differences between them. In gastric bypass, the physician creates a small pouch that bypasses the stomach and goes directly into the small intestine. On the other hand, the size of the stomach is reduced in the gastric sleeve surgery by cutting away a portion of the stomach. However, the goal of the two procedures is for weight loss. In addition, the gastric sleeve surgery is best for individuals that are obese, and have at least a body mass index of 40. Individuals that are not heavy are not advised to undergo the gastric bypass surgery.

What Should You Expect When Undergoing The Gastric Sleeve Procedure?

The gastric surgical procedure usually lasts for about one hour. The patient does it by making small incisions in the abdomen and inserts a laparoscope. This is a medical instrument that has a very camera on it, and also sends the live videos to a monitor. The surgeon in charge, will then pass other instruments through the additional cuts and removes about three third of the stomach. Lastly, the surgeon will join the remaining parts of the stomach to form a sleeve. After the procedure, the stomach would like a banana. This procedure is irreversible, and patients usually spend about 2 to 3 days in the hospital before they’re discharged.

What Should The Patients Do After The Surgery?

Patients should drink just clear liquid the next day after the surgery. However, patients are allowed to eat pureed foods, and drink protein shakes after they leave the hospital, which is usually after 3 days. This has to continue for about 4 weeks. It’s important to know that patients have to change the way they eat permanently, else there is a risk of the stomach dilating and becoming big again. Patents have to consume foods that are soft in consistency and also eat them slowly, especially in the first month. Below are some of the habits patients must develop and get used to, especially after undergoing surgery:

  • Patients must chew every solid food thoroughly before swallowing.
  • Patients should avoid drinking when eating, as this may fill the stomach, and reduce the amount of food they would eat. The stomach is decreased already, filling up the stomach before eating, further reduces the nutrients that should be made available for the body, and for body metabolism.
  • Patients must drink water or other fluids thirty minutes after finishing a meal.
  • Patients must take vitamin supplements on a regular basis. They should also take mineral supplements, and both should be taken every day.
  • Patients must ensure they avoid the consumption of carbonated drinks and junk foods.

Patients are free to consume the meal they like, two to three months after the procedure. However, patients would not be able to eat as much as they used to, before the procedure.

What Are The Benefits Of The Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

The primary purpose of the gastric sleeve surgery is to help people lose weight. People that had undergone this surgery usually experience a significant reduction in their weight. However, the gastric sleeve surgery also has some other benefits apart from the gastric sleeve surgery. Below are some of them:

  1. Remission of diabetes mellitus type 2: Studies have shown that the gastric sleeve surgery causes a long term remission of the type 2 diabetes mellitus, especially the kind that is difficult to manage. In addition, reports have shown that the gastric sleeve procedure is effective for obese patients that are also affected with type 2 diabetes mellitus. This is because it helps them to live without depending on insulin, and other diabetes medications, for at least the next years after the procedure.
  2. Improves the cardiovascular system: The gastric sleeve surgery significantly reduces the risk of developing coronary heart diseases, stroke, and other peripheral heart diseases. In addition, the cholesterol level returns to normal, shortly after the procedure. Also, patients affected with hypertension realizes stability in their blood pressure after the procedure. The gastric sleeve surgery improves the state of health of the cardiovascular system.
  3. Gastroesophageal reflux disease: This is a condition in which food substances in the stomach move back into the esophagus due to a weak gastroesophageal sphincter. Fat deposits are sometimes responsible for this. Gastric bypass surgery is one of the ways of treating this.
  4. Reduces the risk of depression: People affected with obesity, especially the morbid type, are at high risk of getting depressed. This is because obesity puts a limitation on the things they can do. They usually get tired even after carrying out activities that don’t require much effort. They battle with a lot of diseases that are associated with being obese. The society doesn’t consider oversized people attractive. All these and more may cause them to be depressed. However, the gastric sleeve surgery makes them lose a significant amount of weight, making them attractive and also boosting their confidence. Overall, the procedure helps reduce the risk of depression.
  5. Reduces obstructive sleep apnea: Obstructive sleep apnea is a condition that is common in obese or overweight persons. The excess fat in their body blocks the openings of the respiratory structures. Obstructive sleep apnea can lead to death in severe cases. However, the gastric sleeve surgical procedure helps obese and overweight people to attain a healthy weight and also eliminates obstructive sleep apnea. Usually, individuals affected with severe sleep apnea has to rely on relying on the use of the CPAP machine when they’re sleeping. They wouldn’t have to use the machine anymore, because of the effect of the gastric sleeve procedure.
  6. Relieve of pain the joints: Obese and overweight people put a lot of pressure on their joints, due to their excessive weight. This causes them a lot of discomfort, pain, and can also lead to damage of the joints. However, this problem is eliminated, as they undergo the gastric sleeve surgical procedure, and loses weight. Apart from removing the excess weight they exert on their joints, persons involved would not have to rely on anti-pain medications anymore, and they also enjoy more mobility.
  7. Boost fertility: Individuals that are obese or overweight usually have a reduction in fertility, especially when they are still in their childbearing years. However, the gastric sleeve surgical procedure causes them to lose a significant amount of weight and also boosts their level. This applies to both men and women, both more applicable to women.
  8. Reduces the risk of having other diseases: The gastric sleeve surgical procedure helps to reduce the risk of developing other diseases. People that are overweight or obese are at risk of developing a lot of diseases. Some of the examples of these diseases include gallbladder disease, pregnancy complications, metabolic syndrome, and so on.

Things You Should Consider When Choosing A Facility For The Gastric Sleeve Surgical Procedure?

Below are some of the things you should consider, before deciding on the facility to undergo your surgery:

  1. Experience: It’s always best to choose a facility that has a vast experience in carrying out the gastric sleeve surgical procedure. The more experience the surgeons in the facility has, the better their outcome. This procedure is usually safe, especially when carried out by a surgeon that is skilled, knowledgeable and has a lot of experience in the particular procedure
  2. Facility: It’s also important to check if the facility has modern equipment. Facilities that still relies on old and archaic medical equipment and instruments might not do a good clean job, as compared to those that have the modern equipment and experienced surgeons.
  3. Pre-surgery counseling: It’s always easier when there is a team of doctors that can counsel patients before and also after the surgery. This is important because they prepare the mind of the patients for what is to come. In addition, they educate the patients on what to do, and what not to do, after the surgery. This includes the type of food to eat, the kind of foods to avoid, and so on. Studies have shown that the best chances of success are achieved when there is an experienced medical team supports and counsels the patient throughout the journey of recovery and after. This team usually includes the surgeons, endocrinologists, psychologists, nurses, and so on.

Who Are The Candidates For Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

The gastric sleeve surgery is primarily a procedure for individuals that are morbidly obese. This procedure helps to lose a significant amount of weight, and also keep off extra weight. However, not all overweight people qualify to go for the surgery. Candidates for this procedure has to be between the age of 18 and 65. In addition, they must have a body mass index of at least 40 or more. In addition, the individual must be able to withstand the physical stress associated with the procedure. People suffering from some health complications might not be allowed to undergo this procedure. This is because of the risk associated with it. The gastric sleeve surgery is a major surgery that has a lot of risks.

Is It Advisable To Get Pregnant After The Gastric Sleeve Procedure?

It’s safe to get pregnant after undergoing the gastric sleeve procedure. However, patients have to wait for at least one year and a half, before considering pregnancy. This period of time is needed so that they can maintain a normal and low weight. Pregnancy causes women to undergo a lot of physiological and physical changes.

How Much Is Gastric Sleeve Surgery In Mexico?

The cost of the gastric sleeve surgery varies from country to country, and also from state to state. However, the average of the procedure is usually around $14,900 in the United States. The cost of having this procedure is from $6000 to $12,000 in Mexico.

Medical Tourism Gastric Sleeve

Due to the relative cost of the gastric sleeve surgery in Mexico, people tend to travel from the United States to Mexico to have the procedure done.

 

How Long Does It Take To Return To Recover After The Procedure?

It usually takes around 2 to 3 weeks for patients to recover. However, this might also extend to up to a month or more, depending on the state of health of the patient. Patients that undergo open surgery might take longer to recover.

Is It Possible To Gain Weight After The Gastric Sleeve Procedure?

Patients lose a lot of weight after the procedure. In fact, most patients lose about 70% of their body weight within one and half years to two years after the procedure. On the other hand, some patients gain some weight after reaching their low weight. People that gain some weight after the surgery are mostly those that indulge in the wrong food and drinks. Other factors that could cause this include not exercising enough, consuming a lot of food, and also drinking within 30 minutes of eating.

What Are The Options For Reversing Weight Gain After The Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

There are situations where patients gain weight even after undergoing the gastric sleeve surgical procedure. This happens in about 30% of patients.  Below are some of the things that can be done to reverse the weight gain:

  • Change your diet: As earlier mentioned, it’s a must to consume soft food within the first few weeks of the surgery, and also drinking water 30 minutes before or after finishing a meal. In addition, patients must endeavor not to overeat, or eat a large amount of food. Doing this can stretch the stomach. Lastly, patients should avoid the consumption of carbonated drinks. This includes soda and alcohol for a long time. Patients should also consume less heavy calorie food. In addition, patients should consume less starchy and carbohydrate food. Patients should totally eliminate junks and other fast food such as McDonald’s, KFC and so on. Rather than consuming all these foods with a large number of calories, patients should drink more fluid before eating, and eat more vegetables and another low-calorie diet.
  • Counseling and support: Most facilities offer to counsel before and after the surgery. They educate patients on what and what not to do. This includes the type of food to eat, the kind of foods to avoid, and so on. Studies have shown that the best chances of success are achieved when there is an experienced medical team supports and counsels the patient throughout the journey of recovery and after. This team usually includes the surgeons, endocrinologists, psychologists, nurses, and so on.
  • Medication: There are some special medications that can help reverse this. Patients should ask their physicians if there are medications they can take to help them reverse their gain weight.
  • Treatment for food addiction: Patients that have a food addiction problem should seek help from professionals. e
  • Get a personal trainer: It’s essential for anyone trying to maintain a healthy weight to actively and regularly participates in physical exercise. A personal trainer would encourage and push towards achieving your personal fitness goals. This combined with the right diet would keep at a normal and healthy weight.

What Are The Risks Associated With The Gastric Sleeve Surgical Procedure?

The gastric sleeve surgery has a lot of benefits, as mentioned above. However, it also has some risks and complications associated with it. It’s important to know that the procedure is generally safe. The complications and risks occur on rare occasions and also due to some factors. Below are some of the complications that could arise due to the surgical procedure:

  1. Infection: Infection is always something to consider when undergoing a surgical procedure, regardless of the type of surgery. Infections might develop due to different reasons such as the instruments and equipment used by the physicians and surgeons. Infection can affect organs of the body such as the lungs, gastrointestinal system, bladder and so on. Physicians prevent this kind of complication by administering antibiotics to patients before and after the surgery. This prevents the development of infection.
  2. Thromboembolism: This is a condition in which there is a formation of a clot in the blood. This clot usually forms when particles in the blood vessels join with the clots to form a ball. This material formed is called the thrombus. This can travel from where it’s formed to other parts of the body. The emboli can go to the veins of the leg to create the deep vein thromboembolism. This causes a lot of pain in patients, and can also travel to the lungs to form pulmonary embolism, a condition that can lead to death if not well treated. Physicians offer medications such as blood thinners before the procedure to reduce the risk of this happening.
  3. Loss of blood: Patients might lose a lot of blood during this procedure. This might occur due to the rupture of the abdominal blood vessels during the procedure. Patients that experiences this would present with significant blood pressure, and might lead to shock if not well managed. Physicians have to carry out blood transfusion to correct this as soon as possible. Patients placed on blood thinners are at risk of developing this kind of complication.
  4. Adhesions formation: Adhesions are a common complication in surgeries. They occur as a result of the injuries abrasions of the abdominal contents. This can eventually lead to scarring. Adhesions can cause the abdominal organs to stick together, obstructing the movement of the organs. This is not an acute condition, but mostly occurs a long time after the surgery.
  5. Development of a hernia: Hernia is an anatomical abnormality in the abdomen. It occurs when there is an abnormal protrusion of body tissue or organ through a cavity in which it normally This condition can occur as a result of surgery and disorderly arrangement of the abdomen. As an illustration, an organ might push through an incision that didn’t heal well. Gastric sleeve surgery increases the risk of hernia development.
  6. Absorption problems: Patients might present with a problem absorbing food nutrients. This is because they get filled up easily, due to the reduction in the size of their stomach. This is why patients need to follow the instructions given to them by their physician. They might also require food supplements to have a balanced body nutrient level. The food supplements include vitamins, an element such as calcium, magnesium, and so on.

References

Kayaalp, C. (2017). Laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass. Laparoscopic Endoscopic Surgical Science.

Post-Surgical Effects of Roux-En-Y Gastric Bypass on Glucose Homeostasis, Intestinal Morphology and L-Cells in Obese Gottingen Minipigs. (2015). Journal of Obesity and Bariatrics, 1(1).

Schmidt, T., Garren, M., Campos, G. and Gould, J. (2011). Outcomes Of Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Vs. Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Band Up To 5 Years Post-op. Journal of Surgical Research, 165(2), p.175.

Stubbs, R. (2014). What makes a gastric bypass a good gastric bypass? Opinion and hypothesis. World Journal of Surgical Procedures, 4(2), p.48.

 

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