The earliest incidence of this kind of surgery occurred in the mid-1990s. Sleeve gastrectomy is a less common form of bariatric surgery than the alternatives, but is gaining popularity as it is also less invasive than a full bypass. Laparoscopic techniques were developed at the end of the 1990s and are now used as standard, since the complications and recovery time are generally lower.
A gastric sleeve operation is suitable for those with a BMI of 35 or more. It involves the removal of around 75 percent of stomach area, leaving a narrow sleeve behind. The surgery is less serious than a gastric bypass (since it involves no 're-routing' of the digestive system), but more so than a gastric band - although some surgeons prefer it to a band because it does not involve inserting a foreign body. The area of the stomach removed includes the part responsible for secreting the hormone Ghrelin, which controls hunger - thereby markedly reducing your appetite.
The procedure is irreversible, and unlike with a band you cannot cheat by snacking, since the overall volume of the stomach is reduced, not just the diameter of the opening. The sleeve can be converted to a gastric bypass if weight-loss stalls, although this is not always necessary; this option is more common for morbidly obese patients.
Patients typically experience a 50 to 60 percent reduction in excess body weight with this procedure. One benefit is that the stomach functions as normal; it is just smaller, so unlike a bypass, it is not as restrictive in terms of the foods you can eat afterwards - only the quantities. Nutritional deficiencies are far rarer as a result, too. Complications such as intestinal blockage are rare, and a sleeve may be suitable for patients who are at too high risk for bypass due to various medical conditions.
There are risks inherent in any major surgery, including infection. Sometimes the 'new' stomach will leak from the staple lines down the edge. Complications occur in between three and seven percent of cases. Death is comparatively rare compared to other bariatric surgery, but still occurs in up to one in 200 cases. The operation is irreversible, unlike a gastric band.