Obesity Treatment in Greece: What Is a Gastric Sleeve? Best Clinics for Gastric Sleeve in Athens

Have you been trying to slim down for years but haven’t been successful in doing so? Did the many diets you have tried let you down? Does your weight lead to further health problems and decrease your life satisfaction? Gastric sleeve surgery may be the solution for you if your body mass index (BMI) is more than 35.

According to World Health Organization, people who have a BMI of 25 are considered overweight and those with a BMI over 30 are classified as obese. Obesity can cause significant, lifelong illnesses as well as psychological and emotional problems. Obesity can raise the risk of contracting illnesses like diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and heart conditions. It is one of the main risk factors for early mortality since it causes a lot of complications.

A variety of surgical procedures are performed to help obese patients reduce weight, including weight loss surgery like gastric bypass or gastric sleeve. Over the past few years, gastric sleeve, sometimes referred to as sleeve gastrectomy or sleeve gastroplasty, has been the most popular surgical method for losing weight for people with obesity. In this post, we’ll examine this procedure in great detail while concentrating on Greece, a Mediterranean nation. Then, we will introduce the price offers in the medical facilities that we are working with.

How Is Gastric Sleeve Done?

Gastric sleeve, commonly referred to as sleeve gastrectomy, is a bariatric procedure that aids in significant weight loss.

General anesthesia is used during gastric sleeve surgery. This procedure, known as a laparoscopic surgery, involves inserting tiny medical devices through numerous small abdominal incisions. These devices are used to cut and remove a part of the stomach. A sleeve gastrectomy involves removing roughly 80% of the stomach and reshaping the remaining portion into a long, narrow sleeve or tube. The name of the operation derives from the stomach’s sleeve-like appearance after surgery, when it resembles the size and form of a banana.

The patient’s digestive system is also changed by this surgery because the stomach’s size is substantially reduced. Following surgery, the patient has a decreased capacity for food consumption and nutrient absorption. Patients start eating smaller quantities and experiencing less hunger, which causes their weight to drop quickly over the course of the year that follows surgery.

Does Gastric Sleeve Surgery Work?

We can state with confidence that gastric sleeve surgery is quite successful. After the surgery, there is substantially less room to hold food inside the stomach because of its decreased size. Patients do not need to consume food as much as they previously did and become full much faster as a result. Rapid weight loss is possible because they are eating less food.

Additionally, during the gastric sleeve procedure, the portion of the stomach that generates the hormone known as ghrelin is removed. Ghrelin is frequently referred to as the “hunger hormone”, and many people discover that they are significantly less hungry after surgery once the part of the stomach producing this hormone has been removed. Dieting becomes considerably simpler since hunger is controlled.

A sleeve gastrectomy, like other weight loss operations, can also help treat health issues brought on by obesity, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and sleep apnea.

Is Gastric Sleeve Safe? What Are the Risks of Gastric Sleeve?

Even though undergoing a procedure like a gastric sleeve is often safe, bariatric surgeries are never completely risk-free. You should discuss these risks with your surgeon before deciding if the procedure is good for you. Most of the time, adverse reactions are mild and transient. Less than 2% of patients experience significant complications overall.

The following are examples of early side effects from gastric sleeve surgery:

  • Leakage of new connections in the stomach where incisions were made
  • Blood clots
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

Side effects that can come about later can include:    

  • Gallstones
  • Gout flare
  • Heartburn or acid reflux
  • Hair loss
  • Excess skin in the areas where drastic weight loss occurs
  • Vitamin and mineral deficiencies
  • Disinterest in food

Each person will react to the surgery or the recovery process differently. Many individuals report discomfort or soreness following surgery since their stomachs will have undergone a significant transformation. Your body may experience stress when it adjusts to rapid hormonal changes as a result of consuming less food and absorbing fewer nutrients. If your surgery is carried out by a qualified and experienced surgeon who can handle any issues that develop during the procedure, the likelihood of encountering very dangerous side effects is significantly decreased.

Frequently Asked Questions about Gastric Sleeve Surgery in Greece

Who Is a Good Candidate for Gastric Sleeve?

One of the most popular operations for people living with obesity who have failed to permanently lose weight in a healthy way using other methods is gastric sleeve surgery.

Anyone with a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or more should consider weight loss surgery. Additionally, if you have a preexisting disease that is harming your health and your doctors recommend weight loss and your BMI is between 30 and 35, you may be a candidate for bariatric surgery.

Is Gastric Sleeve Reversible?

Unlike the adjustable gastric band and the gastric bypass, sleeve gastrectomy is a permanent treatment that cannot be reversed. Gastric sleeve surgery permanently removes up to 80% of the patient’s stomach. Since deciding to have gastric sleeve surgery is a significant decision, you should be informed about all the specifics of the process before making your choice. Rest confident that the benefits of gastric sleeve surgery far outweigh the risks for many individuals.

How Long Does Gastric Sleeve Surgery Take?

Gastric sleeve surgery is performed with the patient under general anesthesia. The surgery is done laparoscopically which means that the stomach is reached through small cuts made on the abdomen. The operation can take about 1-2 hours to be completed. The patient will be asleep during this time. Post-operation, patients stay in the hospital for 2-3 days.

When Can You Return to Work After Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

It takes months to fully recover from a bariatric surgery like a gastric sleeve. You should be aware that recovery time will be different for each individual; some people will heal entirely in a month, but others will require a little more time.

However, it is possible to carry on with your work before you are fully recovered. It will take a few weeks after surgery to regain your pre-surgery energy levels. Many patients return to work two to four weeks after surgery, with no activity restrictions.

When you can return to work depends on the type of work you do. If your job does not require a lot of physical work and you mostly sit down during the day, you may be able to continue working earlier, even after 5-10 days. However, if your job is of a more strenuous nature where you need to move around a lot or carry heavy objects, it is recommended that you wait more to recover.

What Does a Gastric Sleeve Leak Feel Like?

While it is an extremely rare complication, it is possible that there is leakage after gastric sleeve surgery. Surgical staples are used to seal and reshape the stomach during the surgery after a large part of the stomach is removed. If the staples come out or your body doesn’t heal properly, it may cause gastric fluids to seep through and reach other parts of the body. This presents a hazard since the fluid contains bacteria and may infect the abdomen if it leaked.

Following sleeve gastrectomy surgery, you should contact your doctor right away if you experience any symptoms such as fever, stomach ache, nausea/vomiting, chest pain, or rapid breathing.

The experience of the bariatric surgeon is typically directly correlated with the likelihood of this condition. Additionally, people who did not properly care for themselves after the procedure may experience leakage.

How Much Weight Can You Lose With Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

One of the first questions that patients ask is how much weight loss they can anticipate after gastric sleeve surgery. Naturally, even though all gastric sleeve surgery patients go through the same treatments, not all patients will have the same results. The patient’s post-operative recuperation, nutrition, and mobility will have a considerable impact on the results of the weight loss even if the treatment is the same.

If patients faithfully follow their activity and dietary routines, they may lose more weight. Depending on initial BMI, weight-related health issues, age, and other factors, results may vary from patient to patient.

Patients might anticipate experiencing rapid and significant weight loss following gastric sleeve surgery. Many people lose, on average, 60–70% of their excess weight one year after surgery.

However, it’s crucial to remember that this is only achievable if patients significantly change their lifestyles, follow their diet guidelines, and incorporate exercise into their daily lives even after their recovery period is over.

What Can You Eat Before and After Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

Patients must adhere to a diet before gastric sleeve surgery to prepare themselves because the surgery will significantly alter the stomach. In many cases, you should begin your pre-op diet three weeks before your gastric sleeve operation. Reducing the fat tissue around the stomach and the liver prior to the surgery with dieting helps the surgeons access the stomach more easily which is important for the safety of the operation. Patients must consume only liquids for 2-3 days before surgery in order to get their digestive systems ready.

You should give yourself some time after the procedure to allow the internal stitches to heal correctly and the swelling to go down. For the following three to four weeks, you must adhere to a rigorous all-liquid diet. Your digestive system will gradually adjust to solid foods and liquids over time. Patients will gradually add solid foods back into their diets. You will refrain from eating particular foods during this time since they may interfere with your recovery.

During the all-liquid diet, beverages that are caffeinated, carbonated, acidic, or sugary should be avoided. You will be provided with a diet guideline informing you about all the foods and beverages you can incorporate into your meals in the weeks after the gastric sleeve operation.

What Happens if You Eat Solid Food After Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

Solid foods will be gradually introduced back into your diet following the surgery. For the first 2-3 weeks, your digestive system will not be ready for solid foods meat, whole vegetables, and fruit. Once you have recovered to some degree, you may eat soft, pureed foods. Generally, it can take up to a month or more until patients can eat solid foods. It is important that you eat slowly and thoroughly chew each bite so that it can be digested better.

The timeline for returning to solid foods is different for each patient. It can be anywhere between 1-3 months until you can eat regular meals. If you eat solid food before your stomach has recovered enough to handle it, complications such as vomiting, diarrhea, or leakage around the surgical staples may occur as a result.

Obesity and Gastric Sleeve in Greece: How Much Does a Gastric Sleeve Cost?

Most EU Member States are experiencing a rapid rise in weight issues and obesity, with estimates putting the number of overweight adults (18 and older) in the EU at 52.7% in 2019.

Greece is one of the ten nations in Europe with the highest rate of overweight and obese persons. The number of people living with obesity is growing each year in Greece similar to the worldwide trend.

Generally, obesity is caused by long-term consumption of too many calories and a lack of daily physical activity. As opposed to those who are at a healthy weight, those who are overweight or obese are more likely to develop a variety of serious illnesses and medical conditions. It is a condition that needs to be treated so that the person can have a healthier and better quality of life.

The price of gastric sleeve surgery usually starts at around €5,500 in Greek medical clinics. There are numerous medical facilities offering bariatric surgeries for the treatment of obesity around Greece, particularly in Athens and Thessaloniki. One such medical clinic that performs gastric sleeve surgery is the Central Clinic of Athens. It is a reputable clinic that aims to provide great treatments to patients and support them in their journey to a better life.

Where to Get Gastric Sleeve Surgery? Gastric Sleeve Prices in Turkey

If you are thinking about getting gastric sleeve surgery in Greece, you will have several options in terms of good medical facilities.

Another good alternative for getting gastric sleeve surgery is traveling to Turkey. Due to its closeness to Greece and convenient transportation options, Turkey is often preferred by Greek people for medical treatments.

Turkish medical facilities are visited by thousands of international patients from not just Greece, but from all Balkan countries including Bulgaria, North Macedonia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, and Serbia.

Turkish medical facilities have a lot of experience with weight loss procedures, especially in locations like Istanbul, Izmir, Antalya, and Kusadasi. All surgeries are performed by qualified and experienced surgeons. Additionally, Turkey’s favorable exchange rate and low cost of living make it possible for patients to have gastric sleeve treatment for very reasonable prices. Currently, gastric sleeve surgery prices in Turkey start from €1,850. For added convenience, many patients fly to Turkey with gastric sleeve medical holiday packages that include all costs associated with the procedure, accommodation, and transportation.

Many foreign patients have received assistance and guidance from CureBooking on their path to weight loss and a healthy lifestyle. Contact us through our WhatsApp chat line or by email if you’re interested in finding out more about gastric sleeve surgery and discounted rates.