Gastric banding is one of the few available surgical options for treating morbid obesity. The Lap Band is a less invasive procedure than the gastric bypass and it is reversible.
The surgical procedure itself requires no stapling and no cutting. It is a surgery done under general anesthesia with the help of a laparoscope meaning that only a few incisions are made on the abdomen.
While the procedure the bariatric surgeon places a silicon band around the upper part of the stomach and fills it with saline solution, creating this way a small pouch. After that, a tube is connected from the device to a tiny access port, which is placed beneath the abdomen skin. If any adjustments are required Sonus Complete after the surgery, those are done through this access port.
There are two brands of gastric banding systems approved by the FDA, the first one the LAP-BAND® was approved in 2001 and the REALIZE® Band was approved in 2007.
Gastric banding helps the patient to reduce the food amount the stomach can bear. Restricting this way the calorie intake the patient gradually loses weight and with the right diet and physical exercises can maintain the weight loss.
Like every other surgery gastric banding also rises some risks and concerns. Problems with the band might occur like band erosion, band leakage, band intolerance or band slippage. Port problems are possible as well, port flip, port leak or port dislocation. Physical symptoms a Lap Band patient might experience when complications occur are difficulties while swallowing, constipation, food trapping, gallstones, nausea and vomiting, gastroesophageal reflux disease, indigestion, food intolerance, infections.
Candidates for gastric banding are those patients who have a BMI of 30 or greater and who have developed one or more obesity related medical conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol level, heart conditions, sleep apnea, infertility (PCOS), type 2 diabetes, osteoarthritis, liver and gallbladder disease and stroke. Before undergoing gastric banding it is good if the patient already tried traditional weight loss methods.