Vertical sleeve gastrectomy is surgery to help with weight loss. The surgeon removes a large portion of your stomach. The new, smaller stomach is about the size of a banana. It limits the amount of food you can eat by making you feel full after eating small amounts of food.

You will receive general anesthesia before this surgery. This is medicine that keeps you asleep and pain-free.

The surgery is usually done using a tiny camera that is placed in your belly. This type of surgery is called laparoscopy. The camera is called a laparoscope. It allows your surgeon to see inside your belly.

In this surgery:

• Your surgeon makes 2 to 5 small cuts (incisions) in your belly.

• The scope and instruments needed to perform the surgery are inserted through these cuts.

• The camera is connected to a video monitor in the operating room. This allows the surgeon to view inside your belly while doing the operation.

• A harmless gas is pumped into the belly to expand it. This gives the surgeon room to work.

• Your surgeon removes most of your stomach.

• The remaining portions of your stomach are joined together using surgical staples. This creates a long vertical tube or banana-shaped stomach.

• The surgery does not involve cutting or changing the sphincter muscles that allow food to enter or leave the stomach.

• The scope and other tools are removed. The cuts are stitched closed.

The surgery takes 60 to 90 minutes.

Weight-loss surgery may increase your risk for gallstones. Your surgeon may recommend having a cholecystectomy. This is surgery to remove the gallbladder. It may be done before the weight-loss surgery or at the same time.