Vertical Gastrectomy or Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy (VSG), was first developed in 1993 and was further revised and then offered to morbidly obese patients in 2001 for weight loss. VSG historically had been performed only as the first stage of Bilio-Pancreatic Diversion with Duodenal Switch (BPD-DS) in patients who may be at high risk for complications from more extensive types of surgery. These patients’ high-risk levels are due to body weight or medical conditions. However, more recent information indicates that some patients who undergo a VSG can actually lose significant weight with VSG alone, and avoid a second procedure. It is not yet known how many patients who undergo VSG alone will need a second stage procedure.
The Sleeve Gastrectomy is an operation that limits how much food you can eat by significantly reducing the size of your stomach (by 75% or more) but does not lead to decreased absorption of food. The left side of your stomach is surgically removed, resulting in a new stomach, which is roughly the size and shape of a banana and holds 2-3 oz. It is carried out laparoscopically with 5 or 6 very small incisions, and is therefore much less traumatic than open surgery, with a shorter healing time and less risk. Since this operation does not involve any "rerouting" of the intestines, it is a simpler operation than the Gastric Bypass, and you will suffer none of the side effects experienced by bypass patients because your digestion is unaltered.
The portion of your stomach that is removed is responsible for secreting Ghrelin, which is a hormone that is responsible for appetite and hunger. By removing this portion of your stomach, this possibly eliminates most Ghrelin hormone production and helps to reduce the sensation of hunger that people have. The removed section of the stomach is actually the portion that "stretches" the most. The long vertical tube shaped stomach that remains is the portion least likely to expand over time and it creates significant resistance to volumes of food. Not only is your appetite reduced, but also very small amounts of food will give you early and lasting feelings of fullness!
Currently Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy surgery is a covered benefit for some insurance companies, but may be considered investigational by others.
Date Updated: 07-NOV-2012