​Gastric Bypass Versus Gastric Sleeve Surgery

Individuals who are considering bariatric surgery for weight loss have multiple options. From traditional gastric bypass surgery to laparoscopic band surgery to gastric sleeve, each type of surgery has its own benefits and risks.

At the UPMC Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence, our team of board certified surgeons will explain the pros and cons of gastric sleeve vs gastric bypass surgeries.

They’ll help you to make the right decision when considering bariatric surgery.

When deciding which surgery is right for you, it is essential to compare your options. You should understand the similarities and differences between the two types of bariatric procedures. When reviewing gastric bypass vs sleeve, there are a number of factors to consider:

Gastric Bypass Procedure vs. Gastric Sleeve Procedure: The Similarities

Gastric bypass and gastric sleeve are very similar procedures. In both cases, the expected hospital stay ranges from 2-3 days and the procedures are not reversible. Although the methods differ, both operations reduce the amount of food you can eat before feeling full.

Gastric Bypass Procedure vs. Gastric Sleeve Procedure: The Differences


Gastric Bypass

Gastric Sleeve


A doctor attaches a small pouch to the intestine in order to bypass the stomach.

The surgeon removes a portion of the stomach, producing a tube-shaped stomach (sleeve).

Recovery Time 2 to 4 weeks 2 to 4 weeks
Risks and Complications Risk of dumping syndrome Lower risk of dumping syndrome
Weight Loss Results Patients can expect to lose 60 to 80 percent of excess weight within the first year to year and a half. Patients should expect to lose weight at a slower, steadier rate. In the first 12 to 18 months, they may lose 60 to 70 percent of excess weight.


Whether you select gastric bypass or gastric sleeve, it’s important that you follow a strict post-surgery diet.

Gastric Bypass vs. Gastric Sleeve: Results and Benefits

Both gastric bypass and gastric sleeve surgeries can be effective tools in achieving long-term weight loss. Both procedures can help improve obesity-related conditions, including:

  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Sleep apnea

Gastric Bypass vs. Gastric Sleeve: Which Surgery Is Better?

You should work alongside your doctor to choose the best weight loss procedure for you.

  • Gastric bypass patients lose between 50 to 80 percent of excess bodyweight within 12 to 18 months, on average.
  • Gastric sleeve patients lose between 60 and 70 percent of their excess body weight within 12 to 18 months, on average.
  • Gastric bypass surgery is generally recommended for very obese patients with a Body Mass Index over 45.

Learn more about our surgery options and review a full comparison chart for the differences between bariatric surgery procedures offered at the UPMC Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence.​

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