Advantages of LAP-BAND® Surgery
LAP-BAND® Surgery is a promising new weight loss procedure with many advantages over other obesity surgical options. Since it's approval by the FDA in 2001 it has become the fastest growing bariatric (weight loss) procedure in the United States.
The advantages of LAP-BAND® Surgery include:
- A minimally invasive surgery
- No stomach stapling or cutting
- No intestinal re-rerouting
- The band is adjustable
- The procedure is reversible
- No Dumping syndrome
- Low malnutrition risk
- Shorter hospital stay
- Quicker recovery
- Lowest complication rate
- Lowest mortality rate
Adjusting the LAP-BAND®
One big advantage of the LAP-BAND® is that the band's size can be adjusted to meet a patient's needs. Not only does the band create a smaller upper stomach pouch, it also controls the stoma (stomach outlet) between the two stomach areas. The size of the opening determines the flow rate of food from the upper part of the stomach to the lower part. Once the band is put in place, it can be tightened or loosened by your surgeon. The adjustments are made by either adding or removing saline from the reservoir port using a fine needle. The ability to adjust the LAP-BAND® makes it possible to customize the rate of weight loss for each patient. Adjustments are a normal part of follow-up care. Reasons for adjustments include weight loss progress, pregnancy, and illness.
Safety of the LAP-BAND® Procedure
LAP-BAND® surgery is the least invasive weight loss surgery available and has both the lowest complication rate and lowest mortality rate of any weight loss surgery procedure. LAP-BAND® patients usually have less pain, less scarring, a shorter hospital stay, and quicker recovery than patients of other forms of weight loss surgery. It is important, however, to talk to your doctor about the possible risks and complications that may occur with this procedure as with any surgical procedure, including weight loss surgery of any kind.
LAP-BAND® Procedure is Reversible
Another advantage of the LAP-BAND® is that the procedure is reversible because there has been no stomach cutting or stapling, or intestinal cutting and rerouting. The LAP-BAND® is meant to be a long-term implant, but it can be removed at any time if necessary. It may need to be removed if you have any adverse reactions or if you and your doctor feel you aren't losing as much weight as you should be losing. After the band is removed, the stomach generally returns to it's original form and the digestive tract will function normally again.
Rapid gastric emptying, or dumping syndrome, often occurs with gastric bypass surgery but not with LAP-BAND® Surgery. Dumping syndrome, an intolerance of sugars and some carbohydrates, happens when concentrated and undigested foods such as sweets enter the lower intestine (jejunum) too quickly. Symptoms of dumping include nausea, vomiting, cramping, dizziness, and weakness. Dumping syndrome does not occur with LAP-BAND®, but it is still best to avoid sweets in order to maximize weight loss and the nutritional value of your diet.