LAP-BAND® or Laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding (LAGB) is a weight loss procedure where a band is secured around the upper portion of the stomach separating it into a small section and a larger section.
Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding (LAP-BAND)
Laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding (LAGB) is a restrictive weight loss procedure, which means the amount of food getting to the intestine for absorption is restricted in volume. The other type of weight loss surgery is called malabsorptive, where surgery is performed to limit the exposure of food to the intestines, so less is absorbed. The LAGB surgery was originally introduced in 1993. Today the surgery is widely known by the name LAP-BAND®, but this is specific to a particular commercial product, approved for use by the FDA in 2001 and widely popular, having been placed in almost 200,000 patients.
How is the Procedure Done?
The procedure is usually done laparoscopically and typically takes about an hour. A band is secured around the upper portion of the stomach creating a small pouch of about half an ounce separating it from the rest of the stomach. Weight loss is achieved by reducing the capacity of the stomach thereby allowing the patient to experience a sense of fullness more quickly resulting in less food intake. Digestion still takes place naturally as the smaller portions of food pass through the stomach and intestines. Unlike other restrictive weight loss surgeries LAGB does not require the removal of any part of the stomach or intestines.
The band is attached to a reservoir, or port, placed just under the skin in the abdominal wall. This reservoir can be filled with saline injected via a small needle. Similarly, fluid can be withdrawn from the reservoir, allowing the surgeon to adjust the tightness of the band around the stomach. Typically, 3 to 5 injections of saline might be required to achieve the optimal results.
Advantages of Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding or LAP-BAND®:
- Gastric banding is the least invasive weight loss procedure.
- No re-routing of the intestine.
- No surgery to the stomach or intestines.
- Less pain than most weight loss surgeries.
- Shorter hospital stay (typically a day) and reduced recovery time compared with other weight loss surgeries.
- Reduced chances of nutritional deficiencies.
- Mortality rate is greatly reduced when compared with other weight loss procedures.
- No dumping syndrome associated with this surgery.
- Band is adjustable. This can be done as an office procedure.
Disadvantages of Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding or LAP-BAND®:
- Potential for injury to stomach during surgery.
- Major complications occur at a rate of 3 -10% requiring additional surgery. These would include erosion of the band into the stomach wall, or the band slipping off.
- Should the band become infected surgery would be needed to replace it.
- Patient compliance is important for outcome. Frequent grazers and people consuming a lot of candy and liquid calories are most likely to have poor results.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with one of our physicians at the Texas Center for Obesity Surgery in Plano, please complete an online appointment request or call our office at 214-501-1333.