Gastric Sleeve


At South Texas Lap-Band, all patients are treated with the highest degree of respect and compassion. This approach helps reduce patient anxiety and helps them openly discuss their weight loss challenges, goals and dreams. Depending on the needs of each McAllen / Harlingen bariatric surgery patient, Dr. Mario del Pino recommends the most appropriate procedure, such as Lap-Band, gastric bypass or sleeve gastrectomy (gastric sleeve). Please explore the paragraphs below if you would like to learn more about gastric sleeve in McAllen, and how this procedure can help you lose your excess weight.

Gastric Sleeve Surgery: What Is It?

The bariatric procedure commonly called sleeve gastrectomy or gastric sleeve is a form of unbanded gastroplasty involving partial gastric resection for creation of a long lesser curve-based gastric conduit "sleeve." The sleeve holds only a small amount of food, which helps reduce the caloric intake and promotes rapid weight loss. As the excess pounds melt away, most McAllen / Harlingen gastric sleeve patients also notice an improvement in their overall health, such as lower cholesterol levels, improved heart health, reduced sleep apnea, reduced back pain and elimination of type 2 diabetes. The medical term for these conditions is "comorbidities."

The mechanism of weight loss and resultant comorbidity improvement seen following sleeve gastrectomy may be related to gastric restriction or to neurohumoral changes observed following the procedure due to the gastric resection or some other unidentified factors. There are currently 15 published reports in scientific literature describing short-term outcomes in 775 patients after sleeve gastrectomy. The reports describe surgical treatment of patients with preoperative body mass index (BMI) ranging from 35 to 69 kg/m2 and excess weight loss up to 83 percent. Comorbidity resolution 12 to 24 months after sleeve gastrectomy has been reported in 345 patients demonstrating resolution rates of diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia and sleep apnea after sleeve gastrectomy.

Similar to other forms of gastroplasty, perioperative risk for sleeve gastrectomy appears to be relatively low, even in high risk patients. Only a single study is published which compares sleeve gastrectomy to a more widely accepted bariatric procedure. In that trial, sleeve gastrectomy was found to be at least as effective and durable as adjustable gastric banding at one and three years following surgery.

Sleeve Gastrectomy in McAllen: Advantages and Disadvantages

Gastric sleeve surgery, like all weight loss procedures, requires careful patient selection and preparation. This procedure is often recommended for extremely obese patients. The sleeve gastrectomy procedure has been used as a first-stage bariatric procedure to reduce surgical risk in high-risk patients by induction of weight loss. This means that extremely obese patients might need to first undergo gastric sleeve surgery before they can pursue gastric bypass in McAllen. This is because sleeve gastrectomy appears to be a technically easier and/or faster laparoscopic procedure than Roux-en Y gastric bypass or malabsorptive procedures in complex or high risk patients, including the super-super-obese patient (BMI > 60 kg/m2). The American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery has suggested that gastric sleeve surgery may be an option for carefully selected patients undergoing bariatric surgical treatment, particularly those who are high risk or super-super-obese.

The disadvantage of gastric sleeve surgery is that long-term data about the weight loss rate in gastric sleeve patients is currently unavailable. This is why the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery recommends that surgeons performing sleeve gastrectomy inform patients regarding the lack of published evidence for sustained weight loss beyond 3 years and provide them with information regarding alternative procedures with published long-term (~ 5 years) data confirming sustained weight loss and comorbidity resolution.

Dr. Mario del Pino thoroughly explains the pros and cons of gastric sleeve surgery prior to recommending this treatment. He also encourages patients to ask questions, and he strives to provide comprehensive, clear answers. Dr. del Pino's goal is to empower all of his Harlingen / McAllen gastric sleeve patients to make educated, confident decisions about their treatment choices.

Schedule Your Gastric Sleeve Consultation Today

If you would like to determine whether you are a McAllen / Harlingen sleeve gastrectomy patient, schedule a personal consultation with Dr. Mario del Pino. He will perform a thorough evaluation, ask many questions about your medical history and recommend the most appropriate bariatric treatment for you. To schedule your appointment, please call (956) 631-8155 or click here.


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  • ASBS Code of Ethics

In addition to helping extremely obese patients begin their weight loss journey through sleeve gastrectomy in Brownsville, McAllen and Harlingen, Dr. Mario del Pino also performs gastric bypass and Lap-Band in McAllen / Harlingen. To learn more about these procedures, please visit the respective pages.