Obesity isn’t just about the added pounds; it’s more about the impact it can have on the patient’s overall quality of life and quality of their health. Obesity can lead to hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, joint problems, and a host of other health issues.
But once a person has become obese, it’s not as if it’s a walk in the park to simply turn around and lose the weight. Losing the amount of weight necessary to become healthy can be next to impossible for most obese people. For many, more drastic measures are needed, such as restrictive operations like gastric sleeve surgery. Gastric sleeve surgery makes the stomach smaller, helping people lose weight. Gastric sleeve surgery, also known as sleeve gastrectomy, is much less invasive than gastric bypass surgery, so many of our Dr. Jacob’s patients at NYC Hernia opt for it.
What is a gastric sleeve?
When patients first hear about a possible sleeve gastrectomy, they assume Dr. Jacob must place some sort of “sleeve” on the stomach. The gastric sleeve simply refers to the new stomach, after it has been reduced during this surgery. Versus a full-size stomach, the new smaller stomach could be said to resemble a sleeve. The reduced stomach limits food consumption, as the patients feels full much sooner, and they feel less hungry, as well.
How is a gastric sleeve surgery performed?
Gastric sleeve surgery can help a patient regain control over his or her body and lose large amounts of weight. In the procedure, a large incision is made in the abdomen in an “open procedure.” In many cases, Dr. Jacob may be able to perform the surgery laparoscopically, using small instruments inserted through several small incisions, all guided by an inserted laparoscope (camera).
Once he gains entry, Dr. Jacob removes over one half of the patient’s stomach. This leaves a thin vertical sleeve that is about the size of a banana. Surgical staples are used to close the incisions and form the new stomach. As you would assume due to the removal of part of the stomach, this is not a reversible procedure.
What happens after my sleeve gastrectomy?
You’ll have some belly pain for a week or so after your surgery. You’ll feel full more quickly, but food may also empty into the small intestine too quickly, which can cause diarrhea and make you feel faint, shaky, and nauseated. You’ll need to watch your nutritional intake.
Eating after your procedure
You’ll start with only small amounts of soft foods and liquids while healing. Then you’ll gradually add solid foods back to your diet. You’ll have to carefully chew your food and be sure to stop eating when you feel full. This may be different because you will feel full after eating far less food than you did before. You’ll need to be more cognizant of your nutrition so that you continue to get the protein, vitamins, and minerals you need while you are losing weight. You’ll probably need to supplement your diet with vitamin and mineral supplements for the rest of your life.
Interested in putting an end to your morbid obesity for the New Year? If you have a body mass index of at least 40, you could qualify for a sleeve gastrectomy. Call Dr. Jacob at NYC Hernia, 212-879-6677, to schedule a consultation.