Can your stomach stretch after gastric sleeve?

by Clairissa Mulloy
(West Palm Beach, Florida)

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Hi There Doctor,

Can your stomach naturally stretch after gastric sleeve as a normal process, or does it only stretch as a result of eating too much food?

I’ve had great results from gastric sleeve and two years later I’m down 100 pounds. However, I want to minimize the risk of stomach stretching.

Thanks,
Clarissa Mulloy

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Surgeon Response To: "Can Your Stomach Stretch After Gastric Sleeve?"

by: Dr. John Rabkin, M.D.

Dear Clarissa,

After a Sleeve Gastrectomy (VG/SG) the natural course over time is for the gastric capacity to gradually increase or "stretch." This gradual enlargement will be seen in everyone who has a VG and is inevitable. However, the degree to which it enlarges as well as the speed at which it does so is highly variable from patient to patient.

Consuming only the quantity of food that satisfies your hunger versus continuing to consume more food beyond that point MAY cause the gastric capacity to increase faster/greater although there hasn't been scientific/medical confirmation of the suspicion that it does so. Nevertheless, the prudent (as well as the more comfortable) approach would be to minimize the quantity of food consumed as well as the caloric content of the consumed food to optimize the weight loss and its durability following the VG.

John M. Rabkin, M.D.
Pacific Laparoscopy

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DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the details provided. The above should never replace the advice of your local physicians as they have the ability to evaluate you in person.

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