Gastric Sleeve Surgery or Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy (VSG) is the process of surgically altering the size of the stomach by removing 85% of it which leaves by a sleeve-shaped stomach.
This provides less physical holding space for food and restricts how much you can at one time resulting in weight loss. After gastric sleeve surgery, the body will reduce the production of Ghrelin, a hunger hormone that communicates to the brain what you need to eat and how often.
Although gastric sleeve surgery (VSG) helps morbidly obese patients to lose significant expected weight loss, the procedure does carry potential complications. One of the complications that most patients fear is the possibility of gastric sleeve staple line leak.
The published leak rate for sleeve gastrectomy is 2.8% – at Mexico Bariatric Center, we are significantly lower than average at only ~0.5%. Most leaks can be detected by CT Scan and managed non-operatively. Mexico Bariatric Center surgical teams use staple-line reinforcement, 3 leak tests during and after surgery, and place abdominal drains to prevent gastric leak.
What is a Gastric Sleeve Leak?
Leak after laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy is typically a small seam or hole between staples in the newly formed stomach sleeve. The sleeve leak or fistula will usually cause digestive fluids to excrete from within the stomach into the abdominal cavity, exposed to internal organs and tissues.
Sometimes as the gastric contents leak out from the sleeve, a small fluid collection, or abscess, forms next to the sleeve.