Also called adjustable gastric banding, LAP-BAND® surgery uses an adjustable, flexible, silicone band to control the size of the stomach over time so patients eat less and feel full faster. The band is hollow, and it can be made larger or smaller by injecting saline solution through a tiny port implanted beneath the surface of the skin. Unlike many other types of bariatric (weight-loss) surgery, LAP-BAND® surgery is commonly reversible and does not surgically alter the stomach or intestines.
LAP-BAND® surgery is performed laparoscopically using a minimally-invasive technique that relies on very small incisions to access the stomach and perform the procedure. During the surgery, several small incisions are made in the belly area to enable the laparoscope to be inserted. The scope features a tiny camera that transmits real-time video from inside the surgical site back to a monitor where the surgeon can view them. The soft, flexible band is carefully placed over the upper portion of the stomach. A hollow tube connects the band to a tiny port that’s implanted just under the skin. The port has a very small opening that’s used to fill the band with saline or to remove saline, decreasing or increasing the size of the stomach. Once the band and the port are in place, the incisions will be closed. Most procedures are performed in under an hour, and patients can return home the same day.*
No, once the band is in place, the patient will recover for a few weeks before the saline is injected into the band through the port.
One of the biggest benefits of gastric banding is that it’s completely reversible and does not surgically alter the size, shape or course of the digestive tract, so healing and recovery typically occur much more quickly and with less discomfort compared to other types of weight-loss surgery. The gastric band is also very easy to adjust as the patient’s needs change, and the procedure and band are associated with very low risks of complications.
*Individual Results May Vary.
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