Gastric sleeve revision: Resetting your goals

Chapter 9

Gastric sleeve revision is a plan B for you if the previous weight loss surgery was not entirely serving the quality of life you needed. The main reason to consider revision after gastric sleeve is either weight gain after surgery, not losing enough excess weight, or facing surgical complications.

The best option for patients is up to the surgeon for gastric sleeve revision and that is to counter the risk of complications. However, you should consider the risks and potential benefits of it.

Remember, as there were qualifications for the initial surgery, it also applies to the second surgery.

Let’s read between the lines for further information.

What is a gastric sleeve revision?

The gastric sleeve revision is another operation done on a gastric sleeve surgery that was previously performed on a patient. The reason behind it could either be because of surgical problems or a stretched stomach.

If the patient had poor weight loss and dealt with complications and discomfort, a revision would be a big help to increase additional weight loss. 

In addition, there are several types of revision surgeries available, including bypass, endoscopic sleeve, and others. Your doctor will determine the most suitable option for you.

Gastric sleeve revision surgery

Can you have a gastric sleeve revision?

Can you have another weight loss surgery after the gastric sleeve? Yes, on multiple occasions. If you have faced surgical difficulties or if initial gastric sleeve surgery didn’t serve the goals you wanted in the first place.  

There are different kinds of revisions and each one differs in terms of if you are a suitable candidate for the surgery. It is important to know that the second surgery on the stomach is more complex and you need revision expertise to handle the surgery.

If you are considering this surgery, you should know the potential risk and benefits therefore, you should consult your doctor for the best way to achieve your goals.

Why would you need a revision?

The reason behind having a revision is to revive the process of achieving weight loss goals. Gastric sleeve revision may be substantial in different cases, it might be surgical complications or infections despite its rarity. There are other cases to answer your question: 

Inadequate weight loss: Facing challenges in your journey to achieve goals can be physically and mentally burdensome. Revision surgery can be considered as an option to attain weight loss goals.

Stomach stretching: It is possible to have revision if your stomach was stretched again. It helps to have more control in portion absorption per meal, and diet choices and exercising could help partially for this issue not to occur.

Healing complications: It is an uncommon case but if there is an incompletion of healing that could cause discomfort, pain, and sometimes mobility issues. In that case, it is essential to see a doctor to see if a revision surgery could solve your problem. 

Other complications: There are out of common difficulties such as bleeding, gastroesophageal reflux, infection, or perforation that can be solved with revision surgery.

How to get a gastric sleeve revision

If you want to know what to do to undergo a gastric sleeve revision and be a qualified candidate, here is how things generally go:

Consultation: You need to talk to your doctor who is specialized in revision procedures and they will evaluate your medical history and perform physical exams such as blood tests and review your previous surgery records to see if you’re a fitting candidate.

Revision reason: The doctor will also determine the reasons for the revision. It could be due to complications such as leakage, reflux, insufficient weight loss or weight regain.

Setting revision procedure: Depending on the circumstances, the surgeon recommends one of the several types of surgery.

Pre-op diet: According to the surgery that is set for you, there will be a diet plan for you. It might last a week for you to be fully prepared for the treatment, which includes stopping certain medicines if necessary.

Surgical day: Revision surgery will be performed under general anesthesia and certain tests are required. 

Recovery time: You must stay in the hospital for a few days to recover from the surgery and follow the post-op diet.

It is important to note that revision surgery is not an easy procedure and it is also required to follow a certain lifestyle for the rest of your life to maintain a healthy life.

What do you need to consider before getting a revision surgery?

Undergoing revision treatment is a big step in your life and if you have grey area of anything you might not be familiar with then, take these points to raise consciousness and to be two steps ahead of any possible difficulties to be faced. 

  1. Clear understatement of your second journey in weight loss progress will be based on the timeline, diet choice, and exercises
  2. Undergoing the first surgery requires a specific health standard, your nowadays health status must be similar to what you underwent the first surgery. 
  3. Risks, benefits, potential complications, recovery time, and post-op outcomes recognition are necessary before considering revision surgery.
  4. Make sure you’re in good hands, make sure that you are under the hands of an expert surgeon to feel safe.
  5. Getting health insurance would be a good idea to make the treatment affordable for you.
  6. As much as you need financial awareness, you also need the confidence and emotional support you deserve. You need to be psychologically ready.
  7. As much as you are mentally ready, you need the physical commitment to make lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise to guarantee long-term accomplishment.

What is the best revision surgery for the gastric sleeve?

The doctor decides the best revision surgery for gastric sleeve patients depending on their needs, goals, and health status. However, there are 4 types of revisions and each one differs in terms of technicality suitability for you.

Conversion to gastric bypass: This procedure involves forming a small stomach pouch and connecting it directly to the small intestines, bypassing most of the stomach. It helps limit calories and food intake.

Conversion to duodenal switch: This conversion is leaving the sleeve as is but directly connects it with the smaller intestines. However, most doctors do not prefer this method as it has many insitions complexity, and risks involved in this operation.

Endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty: This treatment is for you if you do not wish for another surgery and it is known as SIS (Single Incision Sleeve). This is done endoscopically by folding a piece of the stomach. This is recommended if you have regained weight. This method will help you have less calorie absorption.

Gastric re-sleeve procedure: You can undergo a sleeve gastrectomy twice if your stomach is stretched or if you have regained weight. It is possible for your doctor to diagnose this surgery if your stomach has built enough amount of structure to be cut again.

You need to contact a doctor to find the best option for you. Our team is happy to help answer your questions. You can contact us either by clicking the green chat icon on the left down below or fill out the form here. We’ll be in touch with you shortly!

How much does gastric sleeve revision cost? 

The starting point for Gastric sleeve revision surgery cost is 4K up to 25K. The price has a wide range due to factors that play a role in the additional expenses, type, and regional POV. Here is a table that shows the prices of gastric sleeve revision in various countries.

Country/Conversion surgery avg. priceGastric bypassDuodenal switchEndoscopic sleeve gastroplastyGastric re-sleeve procedure
United States$27K$35K$15K$16K
United Kingdom$16K$20K$15K$14K

Note that these price ranges go higher or lower because of the surgery’s cost and the treatment’s additional costs. Talk to a professional healthcare provider for the best options for you and you can choose the one for you depending on your budget. You might find health tourism abroad a more affordable and manageable option.

Do insurance companies cover revision surgeries?

In short, yes, insurance companies can cover revision surgeries and it is possible if your case is relevant to the requirements, also, the insurance provider may need a few documents. Let’s break down the ABCs of the insurance plan policy to make the surgery more affordable for you.

The policy of some insurance must know if you have undergone a bariatric procedure yet facing difficulties that made it hard to achieve your weight loss goals. It is medically necessary to know about your initial surgery and current health status to counter any risk of complications.

In the end, your insurance will need to know more details about the operation and if the surgeon is qualified for revision surgery with experience.

Gathering this information is in your advance for coverage, and the higher the quality of the insurance, the better chance to cover a higher percentage of the bills.

Li S, Jiao S, Zhang S, Zhou J. Revisional Surgeries of Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy. Diabetes Metab Syndr Obes. 2021 Feb 10;14:575-588. doi: 10.2147/DMSO.S295162. PMID: 33603423; PMCID: PMC7882429.

Tomasz G. Rogula · Philip R. Schauer · Tammy Fouse. Prevention and Management of Complications in Bariatric Surgery. Apr 2018.

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