How the LAP-BAND® Works
LAP-BAND® is the abbreviated and trademarked combination of two words (LAP from laparoscopic and BAND from gastric band). The LAP-BAND® System's silicone elastomer band is placed around the upper part of the patient’s stomach to create a small stomach pouch that can hold only a small amount of food. The lower, larger part of the stomach is below the band. These two parts are connected by a small outlet created by the band. Food will pass through the outlet (called a "stoma" in medical terms) from the upper stomach pouch to the lower part more slowly, and you will feel full longer.
One of the major advantages of the LAP-BAND® System is that the diameter of the band outlet is adjustable to meet your individual needs, which can change as you lose weight. The inner surface of the gastric band can be inflated with liquid (saline solution) or deflated to modify the size of the stoma.
The gastric band is connected by tubing to a reservoir, which is placed well under the skin during surgery. After the operation, the surgeon can control the amount of saline in the band by entering the reservoir with a fine needle through the skin. The LAP-BAND® is a unique surgical treatment because in many cases the size of the stoma can be customized to accommodate your changing needs without further surgery.
Advantages of the LAP-BAND®
- Less invasive than other bariatric surgeries: Of all the operations for severe obesity, the LAP-BAND® System is considered to be the least traumatic. The operation can usually be performed laparoscopically (using small incisions and long instruments rather than a single large incision). The procedure requires no cutting or stapling of the stomach.
- Adjustable. In many cases, no follow-up operation is necessary to modify the diameter of the stoma.
- Avoids irreversible damage: If the LAP-BAND® needs to be removed for any reason, the stomach generally returns to its original form.
- Reduced hospital stays: Patients normally leave the hospital the same day or stay overnight after the laparoscopic operation.
- Quicker recovery: After the laparoscopic procedure, patients usually resume normal activities within a week or two, and within four weeks if the procedure is not done laparoscopically or if there are complications.
Schedule a consultation for Lap-Band Surgery
Want more information on whether the LAP-BAND® could be the right bariatric surgery to help you lose weight? Attend one of our free weight loss surgery seminars or schedule a consultation with weight loss surgeon Dr. A. Enrique Whittwell in Miami, Florida today at (305) 665-0100. You can also request an appointment online.