What can I expect after a gastric sleeve?
A gastric sleeve will have a huge impact on your life. You will have to be more aware of what you eat because your body can absorb and process less food. After your gastric reduction, you must take extra vitamins daily. After the operation, you may only eat fluid or ground food, for three weeks, so that the sutures in the stomach can heal properly.
It is also important to adjust your lifestyle. Only by doing so will you continue to benefit from your weight loss. You will experience fewer health problems – some of which can disappear entirely. Also, your quality of life will greatly improve.
You may start walking directly after the surgery, and you may go home after about two days. The day after you have returned home you will receive a call from us to make an appointment for your first check-up. Furthermore, your dietary instructions must be clear. Should this not be the case, then we will be happy to help you. We can be reached by phone daily.
Two weeks after the surgery, you will have a check-up with the bariatric nurse at the practice of Diana Gabriels. You will have further check-ups with our bariatric nurse after three, six and nine months, and after one year.
Each time adjustments will be made when and where necessary. Should there be any specific issues, you can make an extra appointment. We advise you to hand in a blood sample to your local GP after six months. This to check the nutritional and vitamin levels in your blood. You should continue to repeat this at least once a year. Should your levels be low, we will then start with supplementary medication.
There will be a bi-yearly check-up as from the first year after the operation, over five years.
You should take it easy for the first two weeks so that the wounds will heal well. After the first two weeks, and only if the wounds have healed well, can you start to do everything again.
It is essential that you then immediately start to get enough physical exercise. This will have a positive effect on the end result. By burning more calories, you will lose more weight, and you will stimulate the muscles. Look to see which activities suit you and do what you enjoy. Exercising together with someone often acts as a motivator.
Make sure in any case that you get at least half an hour of physical exercise a day. Start swimming, for example, or walking, jogging or fitness. Small changes make a big difference. Take the stairs instead of the lift for a change. (If possible) Walk to appointments or the shops. Park the car just that little bit further away.
Doing sports and exercise will need to become a permanent and logical part of your new lifestyle. This is healthier, and it will help you to maintain your new weight. Doing this will be much easier to achieve when you have support – think of an exercise therapist or doing sports in a group.
Regardless of whether you are being treated for a gastric band, sleeve or bypass, or whether your BMI is less than 40, it is still possible to lose up to 100 per cent of your excess weight. The target weight is then a BMI of 23-25.
Is your BMI the same or higher than 40, then you will statistically lose 70 per cent of your excess weight.