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Gastric sleeve surgery with the addition of a reinforcing ring, which can improve outcomes
Gastric sleeve surgery is one of the most common types of weight-loss surgery in the UK and works by reducing the size of your stomach by about 70% - creating a 'sleeve' that becomes your new, smaller stomach. This encourages weight loss because it prevents you from being able to eat as much as you would have previously, and it simultaneously reduces your appetite because you feel fuller after eating less food.
Banded sleeve gastrectomy works in the same way, but a reinforcing ring (band) is also added around the upper part of the 'sleeve', which further reduces your stomach's capacity. It is also thought to reduce the possibility that the gastric sleeve will stretch and become less effective over time.
If you would like to learn more about weight-loss surgery with Circle Health Group, book a consultation with one of our consultant surgeons. Call or book online and you can often find an appointment within 48 hours.
However, initial results are very positive and multiple studies have shown that the banded option can offer significantly increased weight loss in the long term.
Bariatric surgery is typically only recommended for people with a BMI (body mass index) of 40 or over, or 35 and over if you have a serious condition such as diabetes or hypertension that might improve with weight loss.
Weight-loss operations are major procedures that do carry risk, although they are generally very successful. They won't be considered unless you have tried other weight-loss methods and they haven't worked for you.
Whether this particular type of surgery is right for you will depend on your personal circumstances. Your consultant surgeon will be able to help you make the decision.
The most obvious alternative is a gastric sleeve operation without the addition of the band.
The other weight loss procedure we offer most commonly is a gastric bypass. This works slightly differently to a gastric sleeve in that your stomach is divided into two parts and your small intestine is rerouted so that the lower part of your stomach is bypassed.
Which option is better for you will depend on factors such as your age and weight and your overall health.
They will ask you lots of questions about your diet and lifestyle, about any attempts you have made to lose weight in the past, and any other treatments or surgeries you have had and how effective they were.
This is a really important appointment where we start building your bespoke treatment plan, and your consultant surgeon will talk you through everything in detail. Don't hesitate to ask as many questions as you like.
Once the test results are back, your consultant will talk you through the treatment options in detail, including a banded sleeve gastrectomy if they think you are a suitable candidate. The final decision is up to you.
Before any operation, it's a good idea to be as healthy as possible. This can reduce the risk of complications and speed up recovery. Your consultant will give you tips on how to stay healthy, and we've given a general guide below.
Before bariatric surgery, most people are required to lose a certain amount of weight and make changes to their diet and habits to promote this. Your specialist will give you a personalised guide to what is needed, and they might put you in touch with our physiotherapy and nutrition teams to help you. These diet and lifestyle changes not only make surgery safer and improve the outcomes, they also help you to get ready for the significant changes you will have to make after you have had surgery.
To keep yourself as healthy as possible, you should:
The operation is usually performed laparoscopically, which means it is a minimally invasive procedure – a type of keyhole surgery.
A gastric sleeve procedure creates a 'sleeve' from a small portion of your stomach and sections off the remainder of your stomach using surgical staples.
During the procedure, a device called a laparoscope (a long, thin tube with a light and camera at the end of it) is inserted into your abdomen through very small incisions. Your surgeon will then make a few additional incisions and through these they will insert specially designed surgical instruments to allow them to perform the whole operation without making any large cuts into your abdomen.
Your surgeon will first measure out the gastric 'sleeve' before using a surgical stapler to divide this section from the remainder of your stomach. The larger portion will then be removed, before your incisions are closed.
If you are having a banded procedure, a ring is inserted around the upper part of the sleeve, which further reduces the amount of food that can be eaten. It is thought that the ring also helps to reduce the possibility of 'sleeve dilatation', which is where your stomach stretches and grows again after surgery.
You can expect to stay in hospital for around a week, where your care team will monitor you closely and make sure you're comfortable, including providing pain relief as and when you need it. Your consultant surgeon will visit you to make sure you are OK and to let you know how everything went.
Before you go home, you will have met with various members of our specialist weight-loss teams, which might include nurses, dieticians and physiotherapists. We take a holistic approach to bariatric care and this does not stop after your surgery. We are here to support you as long as you need it - for up to two years in some cases.
When you are ready to go home, you won't be able to drive yourself, so be sure to arrange for a loved one to collect you.
When you go home, you'll probably have some postoperative pain for a while, but we'll give you medication to manage this. You should take it easy for at least a few weeks as your body recovers.
Most people can go back to work within three weeks, but you may need to take more time off if you have a demanding or physical job.
Your weight loss is likely to be rapid for around six months, after which the rate of weight loss will decrease, though most people continue to lose weight until they are at a healthy level.
You will have regular follow-up appointments with our team to check your progress, and you'll also be able to contact us for advice whenever you need it.
Like any procedure, gastric sleeve surgery has risks. It's important to know what these are before you have surgery. Your consultant will talk you through all the potential complications as well as the level of risk in your personal circumstances. It's crucial that you make an informed decision about whether to have surgery.
Risks of this procedure include:
If you would like to see a consultant to learn more about weight loss surgery, book your appointment online today or call a member of our team directly.
Content reviewed by Circle in-house team in May 2023. Next review due May 2026.
Jamie had gastric sleeve surgery at Ross Hall Hospital in Glasgow. Before surgery, Jamie was over 24 stone, felt depressed, and struggled to walk short distances.
Now, Jamie feels physically and emotionally better than ever before.