What to Know About Twisted Stomach After Gastric Sleeve

This uncommon side effect of weight loss surgery may cause discomfort, reflux, nausea, vomiting, or no symptoms at all.

After gastric sleeve weight loss surgery, a twisted stomach, also known as a gastric twist, can occasionally occur. It is thought to impact only 0.69% to 2% of patients following surgery, making it a rare occurrence. However, if it does occur, it may result in pain, nausea, reflux, or vomiting.

It can be challenging for doctors to diagnose a twisted stomach because several disorders could be the origin of these symptoms, or there might not be any. But if it's not discovered right away, it can cause major problems.

This article explains twisted stomachs, explains why they occur, and offers remedies.

Why does your stomach get twisted after gastric sleeve?

Gastric sleeve surgery is a safe weight-loss option for obese patients provided by doctors. Almost the whole stomach, including the portion that causes hunger, is removed by the doctors during the surgery. The rest is a tube, shaped like a banana or sleeve, that surgeons staple shut.

Following surgery, patients typically eat less and lose weight because their stomachs are much smaller and produce fewer hunger signals.

After surgery, the remaining stomach can rotate or twist into a tube shape for a few days, weeks, or even a year. Blood and food may not be able to pass through your stomach due to the twist.

Merely 1.6% of 2,723 patients undergoing gastric sleeve surgery reported experiencing a stomach twist in a 2022 study. The majority showed no signs of the twist. When they did, the majority of them had mild symptoms. Most often, people would vomit.

Because the symptoms of stomach twists are not particularly precise, diagnosis can be challenging at first. On the other hand, a twisted stomach can result in dangerous consequences. It will be easier to treat if you catch it early.

Is this the same as Dumping syndrome?

Dumping syndrome is not the same as a twisted stomach, even though both can result following gastric surgery.

When food enters your small intestine from your stomach too quickly, it might cause the dumping syndrome. On the other hand, food cannot pass through a twisted stomach and into your small intestine.

Dumping syndrome symptoms might appear one to three hours after a high-carb meal, or they can appear just minutes after you eat. Your symptoms sound a lot like a knot in your gut. They may consist of:
  • cramps
  • diarrhoea
  • throwing up
  • burping
  • upset stomach
You can typically steer clear of Dumping syndrome by:
  • consuming frequent, smaller meals
  • consuming no more than 30 minutes post-meal for water or other drinks
  • Steer clear of milk and sugar items.
  • consuming a diet higher in fat and protein and lower in carbs

What symptoms do you have with a twisted stomach?

Frequently, gastric twists exhibit no symptoms. But if you do experience symptoms, they could be as follows:
  • vomiting
  • pain
  • reflux
  • nausea
  • difficulty swallowing

What causes your stomach to twist after a gastric sleeve?

Sometimes the cause of a stomach twist following surgery is unclear.

Experts believe that it could be brought on by:
  • damage to the stomach's supporting ligaments during surgery
  • swelling
  • uneven traction on the various stomach sides when the surgeon is inserting staples
  • haemorrhages (blood clots outside of blood vessels)
  • improper placement of staples during surgery

How long does it take to heal after gastric sleeve?

After weight loss surgery, most patients stay in the hospital for one to three days. Resuming regular activities often takes four to six weeks.

Are there long-term effects of a twisted stomach?

A stomach twist may not initially present with any symptoms, but it has the potential to develop into a dangerous side effect following gastric sleeve surgery. The degree of twisting or rotation in your stomach may cause a blockage in the flow of blood and nutrients.

To get better results, it must be treated as soon as feasible.

How do you treat a twisted stomach?

The best course of treatment for a twisted stomach is early detection with endoscopy and laparoscopic surgery. Typically, endoscopy is the first course of action.

Other methods of handling it consist of:
  • dilation and stent insertion
  • gastric fixation
  • gastric, or Roux-en-Y, bypass


An uncommon side effect of gastric sleeve surgery is a twisted stomach. After a gastric sleeve, a twisted stomach can occur for several reasons, including complications during the procedure.

It can be challenging to diagnose twisted stomach symptoms because they don't necessarily indicate the issue, such as nausea and vomiting. There are several ways that doctors can treat it, but for the best results, it needs to be caught as soon as possible.


How do you fix a twisted gastric sleeve?

One known, major side effect of sleeve laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy is gastric twist. Roux-en-Y gastric bypass or recurrent endoscopic dilatation and stenting are part of the current therapy. An innovative method for treating gastric twists is gastric fixation.

What are the red flags after gastric sleeve?

Excessive or unrelenting vomiting

Can you stretch your stomach back to normal after gastric sleeve?


Is the gastric sleeve bad long-term?

Gastrointestinal obstruction. Hernias. Gastroesophageal reflux.

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