Gastric Sleeve Surgery Pros and Cons

pros and cons of gastric sleeve surgery

Let’s talk about gastric sleeve surgery pros and cons!

If you are thinking about the next steps in your weight loss journey, you may be considering bariatric surgery. Listed below are pros and cons of the most common bariatric surgery performed; gastric sleeve surgery. 

Gastric Sleeve Surgery Advantages

Gastric sleeve surgery has emerged as an effective and highly popular weight loss procedure. The surgery is minimally invasive and offers numerous advantages for individuals struggling with obesity and associated health issues. The surgery reduces the size of the stomach which alters the hormonal signals related to hunger and satiety This procedure provides a transformative path toward sustainable weight loss and improved overall health.

Improve Overall Health

Gastric sleeve surgery has been associated with improvements in various obesity-related health conditions and diseases. While weight loss is the primary outcome of the surgery, the resulting changes in metabolism and hormonal balance can contribute to positive health effects.

Early Recovery

Gastric sleeve surgery is currently done by laparoscopically, reducing blood loss during operation; there are a less postoperative pain and early postoperative rehabilitation. Most patients get discharged by 72 hours post-op. The complication of deep vein thrombosis associated with prolonged immobilization is therefore avoided.

High Expected Weight Loss

Gastric sleeve surgery is one of the bariatric surgeries that achieve the highest weight reduction within the shortest possible time. The average expected weight loss at 12 months after surgery is about 56.1-59% of the excess weight.


Nutritional Deficiencies

Nutritional deficiency is not a typical complication of gastric sleeve surgery as the procedure is purely restrictive with no malabsorptive component. When dietary deficiencies occur in this group of people, it is often due to inadequate intake of such nutrients probably from non-compliance with the post-op dietary plan. Therefore individuals who undergo gastric sleeve surgery spend a lesser amount of nutritional supplements as compared with other bariatric surgeries.

Less Dumping Syndrome

As the intestine is left undisturbed, the chance of developing dumping syndrome after the gastric sleeve is negligible. Thus, your risk of developing diarrhea, abdominal cramps, sweating, tremor, and headache after eating, due to the rapid and untimely dumping of the stomach contents into the intestine, is less in the gastric sleeve when compared with other bariatric procedures.

Revision Surgery

If weight loss becomes inadequate, gastric sleeve surgery can easily be converted to other forms of bariatric surgeries. In fact, if the conversion is to duodenal switch, it reduces the operative time as the gastric sleeve is one of the components of duodenal.

Gastric Sleeve Surgery Disadvantages

Although gastric sleeve surgery offers many benefits for individuals seeking to overcome obesity, it is essential to acknowledge the disadvantages and potential risks associated with the procedure. Much like any medical procedure, gastric sleeve surgery has several drawbacks that patients should consider before making such a big decision.

Stomach Could Stretch

The remaining stomach can stretch and become more prominent if you do not follow the proper eating habit. This may lead to inadequate weight loss or regain the already lost weight, necessitate a pouch reset or revision surgery.

Gastric Leak is a Serious Complication

The most feared complication of gastric sleeve is leakage of stomach content through the staple line into the abdominal cavity. Although the chance of this complication occurring is 2.4- 5%3, 4, it can be life-threatening if not promptly diagnosed and managed. The most gastric leak will occur within 3days post-op while few may be delayed until one month after surgery. Another surgery is often required to correct this complication.

Heartburn Can Occur

For obese individuals who experience heartburn, it is advisable to choose other bariatric surgery. Heartburn in overweight people is due to reflux of acidic contents of the stomach into the lower part of the esophagus with subsequent irritation of the lining.

This results in a burning sensation in the chest which is often aggravated by lying down. People who had gastric sleeve surgery have been found to develop heartburn after surgery while the symptoms get worse in those that had it before surgery. Only a few people experience relief.


As opposed to intragastric balloon devices that are removable and laparoscopic gastric banding that is reversible, gastric sleeve surgery is not reversible once a portion of the stomach has been resected. The procedure can only be converted to another bariatric surgery.

Hair Loss Can Happen

Hair loss can occur in up to 41% of people after gastric sleeve surgery. It is however transient and often resolves by 6-9 months after gastric sleeve can be prevented by adequate nutritional supplements.

In conclusion, gastric sleeve surgery has advantages and disadvantages. The pros, however, outweigh the cons and in the hands of best surgeons and nutritionists, the drawbacks can further be minimized.

In comparing other bariatric procedures, gastric sleeve pros outweigh the cons for most people.

pros and cons of gastric sleeve surgery

Gastric Sleeve Surgery in Mexico Pros

Gastric sleeve surgery in Mexico has become widely popular for those who are seeking weight loss solutions but are unable to get the surgery within the United States. 

Here are some pros of getting gastric sleeve surgery done in Mexico:

  • Cost-effective: One of the most significant advantages to getting surgery in Mexico is the cost. The United States has an incredibly expensive healthcare system and many people can’t afford the treatment they need or want. So they opt for Mexico. 
  • Quality of Care: Many hospitals and clinics in Mexico provide high-quality medical care.
  • Experienced Surgeons: Many surgeons are trained around the world – including the United States. Bariatric surgeons in Mexico typically perform a high volume of surgeries, which contributes to their experience and expertise. 
  • Shorter weight times: You might have to deal with long wait times when trying to get elective surgery in the United States. In Mexico, the wait times are typically much shorter, allowing patients to have surgery sooner.
  • Comprehensive Packages: Many medical facilities in Mexico provide packages that include the surgery, hospital stay, and sometimes even accommodations and transportation for a comprehensive care experience.
  • Tourism Opportunity: Some patients combine their medical treatment with a chance to enjoy a vacation in a new country, experiencing the culture, cuisine and sights of Mexico. This is a perfect time to get some relaxation in before your surgery.

Gastric Sleeve Surgery in Mexico Cons

There are many amazing advantages to getting gastric sleeve surgery in Mexico, but there are also many cons and risks that must be considered before making such a decision.

Some cons include:

  • Quality and Standards Variability: The quality of healthcare facilities and standards in Mexico can vary widely. Some clinics may not adhere to the same stringent standards that are required from hospitals in the United States. 
  • Communication Barriers: There are many clinics where they don’t require their surgeons to be bilingual. There are many surgeons who are not fluent in English so then there might be some miscommunications during your care and treatment.
  • Postoperative Follow-up Care: Follow-up care is crucial after bariatric surgery. However, it is difficult to receive adequate after care when you are in a different country as your surgeon.
  • Legal & Ethical Issues: If something goes wrong during or after the surgery, dealing with legal issues in Mexico might be a little complex. The legal protections and recourse available may not be the same as in the United States.

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