Is laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy a lower risk bariatric procedure compared with laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass? A meta-analysis

Am J Surg. 2014 Dec;208(6):903-10; discussion 909-10. doi: 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2014.08.002. Epub 2014 Sep 20.


Background: Laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (LRYGB) is the current "gold standard" bariatric procedure in the United States. Laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (LSG) has recently become a commonly performed procedure for many reasons, including patients' perception that LSG has less complexity and invasiveness, and lower risk. Our objective was to review the literature and compare the leak rates, morbidity, and mortality for LRYGB versus LSG.

Methods: Publications from 2002 to 2012 with n greater than or equal to 25 and postoperative leak rate reported were included. Statistical analysis included chi-square according to patient number.

Results: Twenty-eight (10,906 patients) LRYGB and 33 (4,816 patients) LSG articles were evaluated. Leak rates after LRYGB versus LSG were 1.9% (n = 206) versus 2.3% (n = 110), respectively (P = .077). Mortality rates were .4% (27/7,117) for LRYGB and .2% (7/3,594) for LSG (P = .110). Timing from surgery to leak ranged from 1 to 12 days for LRYGB versus 1 to 35 days for LSG.

Conclusions: Leak and mortality rates after LRYGB and LSG were comparable. The appropriate procedure should be tailored based on patient factors, comorbidities, patient and surgeon comfort level, surgeon experience, and institutional outcomes.

Keywords: Anastomotic leak; Bariatric surgery; Bleeding; Laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy; Postoperative complications; Roux-en-Y gastric bypass.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Meta-Analysis

MeSH terms

  • Anastomotic Leak / epidemiology
  • Gastrectomy / methods*
  • Gastric Bypass / methods*
  • Humans
  • Laparoscopy / methods*
  • Obesity, Morbid / surgery*
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology
  • Risk