As with the conversion from band to gastric bypass, the conversion to gastric sleeve is typically done as a one stage procedure. The risk of conversion to a two step procedure or to an open procedure are the same as for the gastric bypass.
Our preference is for band to bypass conversion as patients generally see better weight loss and long term health benefits than when converting to sleeve.
Aside from sub optimal weight and health benefits, compared to gastric bypass, the major concern with the sleeve is that to complete the procedure the stomach usually needs to be cut and stapled across the stomach tissue where the band used to be. In most cases this does not cause a problem but the worry is that stapling across the normal tissue and ‘damaged’ tissue (where the band used to be) will increase the risk of a staple line leakage. Staple line leakage is the most worrisome of the sleeve complications because the recovery time is so unpredictable. As is the case for all sleeve patients the implication of a leak is a longer hospital stay that can extend to several months in exceptional cases. The risk of leak in a primary sleeve procedure is about 1 in 80 cases, but the risk would be higher in the case of a revisional sleeve.
Those patients who we would consider revision to gastric sleeve for are likely to be younger, typically under the age of 40. Sleeve is preferred in this group as there is a lower risk of long term vitamin and mineral deficiency than there is with the bypass. It can also be helpful to keep open the possibility of gastric bypass as a future revision should it be needed.
See prices and finance plans for our band to sleeve procedure here.
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