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General Practice 2023

Sleeve gástrico: what é, advantages, risks and recoveryção

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Sleeve gástrico: what é, advantages, risks and recoveryção
Sleeve gástrico: what é, advantages, risks and recoveryção

Gastric sleeve, also known as sleeve gastrectomy or sleeve gastrectomy, is a type of bariatric surgery that is performed with the aim of treating morbid obesity, consisting in the removal of the left part of the stomach, which causes that there is a decrease in the stomach's ability to store food. Thus, this surgery can lead to loss of up to 40% of the initial weight.

This surgery is indicated in the treatment of obesity when the use of other more natural forms has not shown any results even after 2 years or when the person already has a BMI greater than 50 kg/m². In addition, it can also be performed in patients with a BMI of 35 kg/m² but who also have heart, respiratory or decompensated diabetes, for example.

See when bariatric surgery is indicated as a form of treatment.


How the surgery is performed

Gastric sleeve surgery is performed under general anesthesia and lasts, on average, 2 hours. However, it is common for the person to be hospitalized for at least 3 days.

Usually, this surgery is performed by laparoscopy, in which small holes are made in the abdomen, through which tubes and instruments are inserted to make small cuts in the stomach, without the need to make a large cut in the skin.

During the surgery, the doctor makes a vertical cut, cutting the left part of the stomach and leaving the organ in the shape of a tube or sleeve, similar to a banana. In this surgery, up to 85% of the stomach is removed, making it smaller and leading the person to eat less.

Key benefits

The main advantages of the gastric sleeve, in relation to other types of bariatric surgery are:

  • Ingest between 50 to 150 ml of food, instead of 1 L, which is the usual pattern before surgery;
  • More weight loss than with the adjustable gastric band, without the need for band adjustments;
  • Transform gastrectomy into gastric bypass, if necessary;
  • The intestine is not altered, with the normal absorption of important nutrients.

It is still a technically simpler surgery than gastric bypass, allowing weight loss over several years and with less risk of complications.

However, and despite all the advantages, it continues to be a very aggressive technique for the body and cannot be reversed, unlike other simpler forms of surgery, such as the placement of a gastric band or a balloon.

Possible risks

The gastric sleeve can cause nausea, vomiting and heartburn. However, the most serious complications of this surgery include the appearance of a fistula, which is an abnormal connection between the stomach and the abdominal cavity, which can increase the chances of infections. In these cases, further surgery may be necessary.

What is recovery like

Recovery from surgery can take between 6 months and 1 year, with weight loss being gradual and, with the need to make changes in lifestyle.

Thus, the person who underwent gastrectomy should follow the guidelines:

  • Do the diet indicated by the nutritionist. See how to eat after bariatric surgery.
  • Take a gastric protector such as Omeprazole, prescribed by your doctor, before meals to protect your stomach;
  • Take analgesics orally, such as Paracetamol or Tramadol, as instructed by your doctor, if you have pain;
  • Begin light physical activity after 1 or 2 months, according to the physician's assessment;
  • Apply the dressing at the he alth center one week after the surgery.

All these precautions must be carried out so that the recovery is less painful and faster. See more specific guidelines on what to do after bariatric surgery.

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