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Laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (LSG) is a restrictive procedure to reduce the size of the stomach and thereby limit food intake. During the procedure, approximately 75-85 percent of the stomach is removed, leaving a narrow gastric sleeve or tube that limits the amount of food that can be eaten at one time. After eating a small amount, patients feel full and remain satiated for several hours.
In addition to reducing stomach size, LSG may decrease the amount of “hunger hormone” produced by the stomach and, in turn, cause a decrease in appetite that may also contribute to weight loss. LSG takes about one to two hours to complete, and requires no post-operative drain or nasal tube. Patients are typically able to return to work or resume strenuous activity approximately two weeks after surgery.
LSG is performed using five or six small abdominal incisions to provide access for a video camera and instruments. The stomach is restricted by stapling and divided to reduce its size. Although the volume is significantly reduced, the nerves to the stomach and the outlet valve remain intact. The intestines are not removed or bypassed, and the procedure does not cause decreased absorption of nutrients. Because there is no intestinal bypass, potential complications such as marginal ulcers, vitamin deficiencies, and intestinal obstructions are avoided.