Not all bariatric procedures are created equal! Some are invasive and more risker than others. This is why an increasing number of people start to choose mini gastric sleeve, which has gained popularity in recent years as a less invasive and effective alternative to traditional gastric sleeve.
This new option can help you shed extra pounds and let go of the extreme diets and exercises that you have used to follow. With its shorter operating time and quicker recovery, the mini sleeve offers patients a chance to reclaim their health and transform their lives. Unfortunately, however, there isn’t much research has been done regarding its effectiveness and safety. Most research has focused instead on mini gastric bypass.
What Is a Mini Gastric Sleeve?
The mini gastric sleeve, also known as the mini sleeve gastrectomy or mini-VSG, is a less invasive version of the traditional gastric sleeve surgery that has gained remarkable popularity in recent years.
Unlike the traditional laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy, which removes 80-85% of the stomach, the mini sleeve reduces the size of the stomach by half of that amount (40-50%). This is achieved using the conventional 3-5 port technique or a single incision for inserting the instruments into the abdomen.
Although it may not result in as much weight loss as the traditional laparoscopic gastric sleeve, the mini sleeve is an effective weight-loss procedure that offers a less-invasive option for those who are unable to undergo more extensive surgery. However, not all surgeons are trained to carry out this procedure.
The technique can help limit the amount of food you can consume and reduce hunger between meals by reducing the production of the hunger hormone ghrelin. Overall, this innovative weight loss technique is a viable option for those looking to achieve their weight loss goals in a safe and minimally invasive way.
Benefits of Mini Gastric Sleeve
The mini sleeve is a fairly quick procedure, lasting around 25 to 45 minutes. You can recover just within 2 to 14 days. The surgery has several benefits compared to other types of bariatric surgery, including:
- Doesn’t require a strict pre-post-opt diet
- Yield relatively similar weight loss results to the traditional gastric sleeve
- Doesn’t alter the stomach openings and nerves
- Doesn’t affect the normal functions of the digestive system
- Target the part of the stomach that produces the hunger hormone ghrelin
- Depend on the laparoscopic approach, meaning it’s less invasive and leaves minimal scarring.
- Doesn’t need a long recovery time as other bariatric procedures
- Safe and effective weight loss method
Who Qualifies for a Mini Gastric Sleeve?
If you have a low (BMI) and are looking for a minimally invasive weight loss option, the mini sleeve could be a good option for you, but you need to consult a professional weight loss surgeon before moving on with the option.
Since the procedure doesn’t result in as much weight loss as the traditional gastric sleeve, you will need to put in extra effort to achieve your desired weight loss goals. This translates into a dedicated commitment to a healthy lifestyle and regular exercise. In any case, surgeons recommend the procedure to:
- People with a BMI between 29 and 35 and
- Those who can’t undergo more extensive weight loss surgeries like a gastric sleeve or gastric bypass.
The Procedure of the Mini Gastric Sleeve
The mini sleeve surgery usually relies on the laparoscopic technique with some modifications. In short, below are the steps of the procedure:
Bougie Device Insertion
The mini sleeve procedure involves using a bougie device, which is inserted through the mouth and down the esophagus to guide the cutting and stapling of the stomach. Unlike the standard gastric sleeve surgery, the bougie used in the mini sleeve procedure is larger in diameter.
Making the Incisions
Your surgeon will make tiny cuts in your belly (incisions) to allow for the insertion of specialized surgical instruments, including a camera.
Cutting the Stomach
Using the small surgical instruments, your surgeon will remove a part of the lower section of the stomach. However, unlike the traditional laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy, you will keep a larger portion of your stomach, resulting in a miniature version of the gastric sleeve.
To reshape the stomach into a sleeve, your surgeon will use a stapling device that closes the sides of the stomach and may remain in place after the surgery. This will help reduce the size of the stomach and limit the amount of food it can hold, which ultimately leads to weight loss.
Closing the incisions
Finally, your incisions will be sealed and you will be sent to the recovery room. With this minimally invasive surgical approach, the recovery time will be faster, and the scars will be less noticeable.
Recovery After Mini Gastric Sleeve
After the procedure, you will need to follow a specific diet plan for several weeks before resuming your normal eating habits. Initially, for two weeks after the procedure, you must follow a liquid-only diet, followed by a two-week pureed diet. After four weeks, you can resume your regular diet gradually.
If your job is in the office (desk job) or doesn’t involve lifting heavy objects, you may return to work within the first week after surgery. However, if you need to lift heavy objects in your work, you must be careful handling your job in the 4 to 6 weeks that follow the surgery.
In any case, remember that the surgery is just one part of the weight loss process. Be committed to living a healthy lifestyle, which includes following the advice of your surgeon and dietitian. By doing so, you can achieve sustainable weight loss and improve your overall health.
Mini Gastric Sleeve vs. Traditional Gastric Sleeve
Obviously, the traditional gastric sleeve is more effective than the mini sleeve. As mentioned before, the traditional gastric sleeve involves the removal of twice as much of the stomach.
Experts suggest that it has higher and sustained weight loss 3 to 5 years after surgery and can help patients shed more weight, but that doesn’t mean the mini sleeve is irrelevant or obsolete.
Just like the traditional gastric sleeve, the mini sleeve can improve obesity-related conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease, but the traditional gastric sleeve is more effective in this regard.
Mini Gastric Sleeve vs. Endoscopic Sleeve Gastroplasty
It’s highly common for people to confuse mini sleeve with endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty, which is performed through the esophagus. Unlike endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty, the mini sleeve is performed laparoscopically.
In contrast to mini sleeve, endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty doesn’t require any incision. It also has a superior safety profile compared to laparoscopic gastric sleeve according to a study. However, both surgeries have been shown to be less effective than the standard laparoscopic gastric sleeve. This is particularly true for people with higher BMIs.
In any case, both procedures are less invasive and yield great overall weight loss results. They also can be a step in the right direction toward a healthier lifestyle.
Mini Sleeve vs. Mini Bypass
Mini bypass, also known as the Single Anastamosis or Omega Loop gastric bypass, is another “mini” version of a more invasive procedure: the gastric bypass. Surgeons need around 1 to 1.5 hours to complete the surgery, but you still need to be under general anesthesia during the procedure.
Mini bypass leads to quick weight loss as the procedure improves the metabolism process in the body. Amazingly, people with type 2 diabetes or high blood pressure could get rid of these problems after just one day and no longer need blood pressure tablets.
Surgeons describe the mini bypass as an effective solution for those looking to make positive changes in their life and achieve long-term weight loss goals. However, there is a difference between the mini bypass and the mini sleeve. In fact, both are performed laparoscopically, but one of them is restrictive (mini gastric sleeve), whereas the other is restrictive and malabsorptive (mini gastric bypass).
Mini Gastric Sleeve Risks
Unsurprisingly, this form of gastric sleeve is less risker than the traditional gastric sleeve. However, it still can lead to nutritional deficiencies, especially iron deficiency. The body can’t get all the necessary amounts of nutrients due to reduced nutrient intake.
Hence, you may need to take vitamin and mineral supplements regularly for your entire of your life. Nonetheless, some patients may need these supplements only for the first nine months following the surgery to avoid nutrient deficiencies. Other possible complications after the surgery include:
- Nausea, vomiting, or constipation
- Anesthesia-related complications
- Blood clots
Mini Gastric Sleeve Cost
Logically, the cost of mini sleeve should be lower than that of the traditional gastric sleeve. However, that’s not the case always because the surgery involves the use of laparoscopic instruments and other specialized equipment.
In addition, the cost varies extensively based on many other factors, such as the technique used and the location. Hence, the cost of the surgery is similar to the cost of other bariatric procedures. The table below shows the estimated cost of the mini sleeve in different countries.
|Turkey||3500-5000 US dollars|
|United States||12000-20000 US dollars|
|United Kingdom||8000-15000 US dollars|
|Canada||14000-18000 US dollars|
|Germany||10000-15000 US dollars|
|Mexico||4500-9000 US dollars|
|India||4000-6000 US dollars|
The Bottom Line
The mini gastric sleeve surgery is a great option for those who seek less invasive and less risky bariatric procedures. It nearly can yield similar weight loss results to that of a standard gastric sleeve, and in some instances, it may be less expensive too.
However, the effectiveness of this procedure compared to other bariatric procedures is a matter of debate, but most experts describe it as less effective than gastric bypass and standard gastric sleeve.
International Clinics in Turkey provides different types of gastric sleeve procedures to international patients, including mini gastric sleeve and mini gastric bypass. You can contact us immediately using the Contact Us button below.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How Much Weight Can You Lose with a Mini Sleeve?
The amount of weight that you can lose with a mini sleeve surgery depends on a variety of factors. Some may lose 2 pounds (1 kilo) each week after the procedure. Others may lose less than this amount, but most patients reach their ideal healthy weight eventually.
What Is the Difference Between Gastric Sleeve and Mini Gastric Sleeve?
The difference between a gastric sleeve and a mini gastric sleeve is in the degree of stomach resizing. The standard gastric sleeve aims at cutting 80% of the stomach, while the mini gastric sleeve aims at cutting only 40%.
How Much Do You Have to Weigh to Get a Mini Sleeve?
You don’t have to weigh a certain weight to get a mini sleeve. However, surgeons prefer to provide the procedure to those with BMI less than 35. The decision to undergo any other type of bariatric surgery doesn’t depend on a specific weight requirement.
How Much Stomach Is Removed with the Mini Sleeve?
Surgeons remove around 40% of the stomach with a mini sleeve. Some surgeons may opt to remove less or more than this percentage, depending on the situation.
Can Anyone Get the Mini Sleeve?
Anyone can get the mini sleeve surgery, but surgeons often recommend it to people who BMI less than 35 and those who can’t undergo more invasive bariatric procedures.
How Does a Mini Sleeve Work?
Mini sleeve surgery work by making the stomach smaller, just like the standard gastric sleeve, but the resizing of the stomach will be less than the standard gastric sleeve.
Read more: Gastric Sleeve Surgery Abroad: Best Destinations & Packages