Gastric sleeve surgery step by step

Gastric sleeve surgery: what to expect? A step by step guide.

Adrian Teo Weight Loss

Gastric sleeve surgery Perth

Many patients with obesity have struggled for years to lose weight before considering gastric sleeve surgery. The decision to have gastric sleeve surgery is a major decision. That is why at The Surgeons Collective we welcome your questions and are here to help you make a well informed decision if you consider are considering a procedure such as gastric sleeve surgery.

Is gastric sleeve surgery right for you?

A weight loss surgeon can talk about your health, concerns, and goals. During a first consultation, your surgeon will ask questions about your medical history and your overall health, and do a physical examination. That is to determine health-related conditions related to obesity.

If you are a candidate for weight loss surgery, our surgeons will discuss which surgical options are best suited for you. Your bariatric surgeon will also speak to you about the risks and benefits for each procedure. If the benefit of surgery is minimal or if the risks are too high, we will not proceed with organising the surgery. Your health is always a priority for us.

Bariatric surgery can help to improve your life. But it is also important to realise that you will need to be motivated and committed to making significant lifestyle changes. Most of these changes are related to diet and physical activity.

So, what can you do to prepare?

A learning process: first steps to gastric sleeve surgery

It begins with self-education. The internet has made it easy to access information. Start with reading some of our educational pages here on the Surgeons Collective website about weight loss surgery in general or gastric sleeve surgery in particular.

You can then take an appointment with one of our weight loss surgeons to discuss the different options suitable to you.


Meeting the team

Being informed before meeting your surgeon will help you to understand what gastric sleeve surgery is about. At our Perth obesity surgery practice, achieving an excellent outcome for our patients is our number one priority. We offer all our patients personalised care and attention and clear communication throughout this journey. Our team will help you stay committed and inspired to achieve weight loss goals.

We’ll look into your weight-related health issues, family history, discuss previous diets and talk about any major health problems.

We’ll assess your weight-related health issues such as hypertension and type 2 diabetes. If you have tried to lose weight before but struggled, we will discuss those issues with you step by step to ensure that moving forward, you achieve the very best outcome for you. That's because here at The Surgeons Collective, it's about you, not just about the surgery you are considering.

We’ll also help you understand why lifestyle changes, including your diet, are so important. While many people benefit from gastric sleeve surgery, it’s not suitable for everyone.

The preparation begins: next steps to gastric sleeve surgery

If you decide to take the next step, we’ll organise blood tests and then have you see our dietitian. First, the dietitian will assess your blood tests and find out about your current diet and what changes you can make. Then, your dietitian at The Surgeons Collective will initiate your low-calorie diet program, called Optifast. You will reduce your calorie intake for about 2 weeks before your surgery.

It is important that you undergo the Optifast diet regimen as advised by our dietitian. Why? Optifast helps to shrink the liver. And that is important because most obese patients have a "fatty liver". This usually results in an enlarged and fragile liver, obstructing the view of the stomach. So after you have been on Optifast for 2 weeks, your bariatric surgeon will have better access to your stomach during the surgery. And this will reduce the risk of injury and bleeding to the liver.

The big day and beyond: gastric sleeve surgery

Before your surgery, you will meet the anaesthetist who will conduct a pre-surgery medical assessment. That's how he or she determines your fitness for anaesthesia and surgery. Then, the night before the surgery you will fast.

Your sleeve gastrectomy surgery doesn’t take long – typically 1 to 1 ½ hours. After your surgery, you’ll be given some medication to prevent vomiting and help you deal with nausea. You will stay in the hospital for two or three days where your obesity surgeon can observe you regularly. Surgery is performed by key-hole technique (otherwise known as laparoscopic) using small 5-12 millimetres skin incisions. Therefore most patients usually experience minimal pain.

Once you go home you will need to follow a strict diet. You’ll come back to see your surgeon 10 to 14 days after surgery. The next appointment is after three months, then six months and one year. Weight loss will be gradual -- about 1kg to 2kg per week. The maximum weight loss result is usually achieved after 18 to 24 months.

The most important thing to remember is that your weight loss team of specialists at The Surgeons Collective in Perth are here to offer you full support long-term to ensure your weight loss goals are achieved as well as your overall health and vitality!

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Gemma Gilbert Dietitian at The Surgeons Collective Perth

About the author

Dr Adrian Teo | Upper GI, Bariatric & General Surgeon

Dr Adrian Teo is a General Surgeon with sub-specialisation in Upper Gastrointestinal and Bariatric Surgery. He studied medicine at the University of New South Wales and trained in General Surgery in Sydney.

More information about Dr Adrian Teo

Useful links

  • At The Surgeons Collective in Perth, our bariatric surgeons will help you prepare for gastric sleeve surgery.

  • Diet before and after gastric sleeve surgery. Our dietitian Gemma explains the gastric sleeve diet.