Adjustable gastric banding (also known as “Lap-Band” or “Realize band”) is considered by many to be the least invasive surgery for weight loss. The procedure involves placing an implant, a soft silicone ring with an expandable balloon in the center, around the top part of the stomach. It effectively creates a two-compartment stomach, with a much smaller top part of the band. A person eats enough food only to fill the top part of the stomach. Over time, after the meal, the food passes through the opening of the band into the remainder of the stomach, and digestion occurs normally.
LAGB is used to treat severe obesity. It’s advised for people who have tried other weight loss methods without long-term success. Your doctor may advise LAGB if you are severely obese with a body mass index (BMI) over 40. Your doctor may also advise it if you have a BMI between 35 and 40 and a health condition such as sleep apnea, high blood pressure, heart disease, or type 2 diabetes.
Obesity has become a growing concern for individuals in the present generation. Surgical intervention is one of the options for weight loss that obese individuals can opt for.
People prefer to choose surgical options for weight loss mostly when they fail to achieve satisfactory results through other methods such as exercise and diet control. There are different types of surgeries for weight loss, demand for which has steadily risen since last few years. One such type of surgery is the gastric banding procedure.
Gastric banding procedure is a minimally invasive surgery conducted with the help of a laparoscope. This surgery involves the placement of a weight loss band that restricts the passage of the food from the stomach to the intestine. It is commonly called as a lap-band or laparoscopic adjustable gastric band (LAGB).
The weight loss band used during the gastric banding procedure is actually an inflatable silicone device with a tendency to expand and contract. Your doctor can adjust the weight loss band from the outside such that only small amounts of food can pass through the stomach.
Duration of surgery: 1 to 2 hours.
A typical gastric banding procedure lasts for around one to two hours. During the surgery, the surgeon will give anesthesia so that you do not feel any kind of pain or discomfort during the procedure.
The procedure is performed by making tiny incisions on the abdomen. Usually, three to five incisions are required. A laparoscope is used by the doctor to view the inner side of the stomach. A silicone adjustable gastric band is placed around the upper part of the stomach in such a way that a small pouch is created to hold the food.
A narrow opening is left at the site of adjustable gastric band placement to allow the passage of food into the lower part of the stomach.
You should restrict yourself to a liquid diet for at least two to three weeks after the procedure. You can switch to your regular diet after six weeks of the procedure or as otherwise advised by the gastric banding surgeon.
You should report to your doctor if you face difficulty in eating or experience vomiting as soon as you eat. Additionally, no changes in weight should be informed to the doctor. Your doctor will then adjust your band so that you do not face any discomfort.
An accessible port is usually placed under your skin in the abdominal area. The band can be tightened or loosened with the help of this port. The gastric band is adjusted by injecting saline into the port connected to the band. The adjustable gastric band inflates after injecting the saline, which tightens the opening through which food passes into the intestine.
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