Gastric sleeve

Ready to start down the weight loss path? Like many people, you may find that the sleeve gastrectomy is the recommended approach and the most commonly performed procedure. That’s because it does a good job enabling weight loss and requires you to make healthy lifestyle changes.

How does it do this? A section of the stomach is removed through minimally invasive incisions using a robotic-assisted surgical system or laparoscopic surgery. What remains is a smaller stomach in the shape of a sleeve. This sleeve restricts food intake and reduces appetite caused by hunger-inducing hormones by removing a portion of the stomach responsible for its production.

Gastric Sleeve
Care and Recovery

Plain and simple: You’ll be taken care of with the Franciscan Center for Weight Management. Throughout the entire process, our team of care professionals will partner with you to create a treatment plan designed around your concerns and goals for the future. Take a first look at how we approach holistic health by browsing the sections below.

Are you committed to long-term medical follow-up?
Weight loss surgery requires several appointments with your bariatric team for years. These involve progress check-ins to see how you’re handling the lifelong behavioral and dietary changes, and lifelong vitamin supplementation, which helps prevent life-threatening complications.
Are you committed to make long-term changes to your diet, exercise and lifestyle regimen?
Bariatric surgery is not a one-step solution. It is part of a weight loss process that works in tandem with a special diet and regular exercise.
Are your weight loss expectations realistic?
Healthy weight loss occurs over time. Even with surgery, you should expect to see gradual results, while working with your physician to set achievable benchmarks.
Are you severely obese?
Weight loss surgery is typically more appropriate for people with a BMI greater than 40 or experiencing weight-related conditions.
What is your current health state?
Certain conditions prohibit your ability to undergo bariatric surgery safely. These can include respiratory, cardiovascular, gastroenterological or psychological conditions, as well as blood clotting disorders.
Do you have a support system?
It can be difficult to get the weight off and achieve sustained results without help. Family and friends can provide support during recovery and a cheering section as you go forward.

The most common way people pay for weight loss surgery is with insurance. But the process takes time. You should expect to have a few phone calls with your insurance provider to talk about your options and to get a full run-down of your health plan benefits. Remember to ask which specific surgeries are covered. You can find the insurance plans the Franciscan Center for Weight Management accepts here.

Some employers offer multiple health plans from different providers. If your current plan doesn’t cover the cost of bariatric surgery, talk with your Human Resources department about your options. If another provider offers the surgery, consider switching to their plan during the next open enrollment period.

In the event you need to pay for some or all of your surgery yourself, there’s support. Medical loans  and surgery loans are available to those who qualify. In addition, the Internal Revenue Service lets you take the out-of-pocket costs of physician-directed surgery off your income tax.

From your first appointment through follow-up care, there are many essential steps to a successful bariatric surgery. The bariatric surgery program is structured so that you get the support and care you need as you move through your weight loss plan. Your ongoing and active participation will greatly increase your odds of successful weight loss.

  1. Deciding to Have Surgery
    First you’ll take an assessment to see if you qualify for surgery, and attend an online or in-person information session. Then you can schedule your introductory appointment to meet with the provider you’ve chosen and your clinical staff.
     
  2. Preoperative Evaluations
    In order to make the right decision about what kind of surgery is right for you, and to better meet your needs, we require several pre-surgical evaluations like nutrition/exercise counseling (if required by insurance), mental health evaluation and physical exams depending on your health condition.
     
  3. Insurance and Payment Arrangements
    Next, we will submit all necessary information to your insurance company. Once this is complete, we’ll submit a request for surgery approval. Upon your insurance company’s approval, we’ll schedule a surgery date, nutrition class, and a class outlining surgery expectations, plus you’ll have one final appointment with your surgeon before your surgery. Please note the Franciscan Center for Weight Management does not accept the following insurance plans:
    • Community Health Plan of Washington (CHPW)
    • Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS)
    • Medicaid
    • Molina
    • Provider One
    • Regence Healthy Options
    • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

    If you are insured by a plan we do not accept, please contact the Center for Bariatric Surgery at the University of Washington Medical Center at 206-598-2274.
     
  4. In-patient Surgery
    Sleeve gastrectomy surgery lasts about one to two hours. The amount of time you’ll spend in the hospital for gastric sleeve surgery is typically one to two days, but this will depend on your recovery. You’ll start your post-surgery diet right away, and you’ll be up and walking the same day.
     
  5. Recovery
    Post-surgical recovery for weight loss surgery is ongoing. You’ll follow a phased eating and drinking reintroduction and begin vitamin supplementation and medications as directed by your doctor. You should be able to return to work within two to three weeks. Your four-phase diet will evolve over the first six weeks following surgery.
     
  6. Post-surgical Support and Ongoing Care
    You’ll have a follow-up appointment one to two weeks after surgery and check-ins at two-months, six-months and one-year after your surgery. In addition, twice-monthly support groups and ongoing nutritional counseling will help you stay on track.

Having a firm foundation on which to build your future health starts with support. That’s why CHI Franciscan offers resources to help you succeed. Take advantage of each on the path to a healthier you.

Twice-monthly support groups: No one understands what you’re going through better than your peers. Attend an informal, fun support group to talk about your successes and challenges with continued weight loss. This is a judgment-free zone that welcomes people at every stage of their journey.

Nutritional counseling: Sometimes, the biggest thing holding you back is not having the best information. Nutritional counseling professionals can help you create a healthy eating plan, monitor progress and overall health, and provide coaching and support before and after surgery.

Ongoing medical support: Your bariatric care team is available every step of the way to ensure you’re meeting your weight loss goals. They’ll check in with you to discuss your lifestyle changes, medications, vitamin supplementation and any challenges you’re experiencing.

Ready to Take the First Step? See if You Qualify for Weight Loss Surgery

Take a quick and easy assessment to find out if weight loss surgery may be right for you. This simple questionnaire will collect a couple facts about you and make a recommendation based on your individual circumstances.