The LAP-BAND® System is a weight loss surgical procedure in which an inflatable band is placed around the upper part of your stomach. This limits your stomach’s capacity and creates a feeling of fullness. As a result, you eat less food and lose weight.
The excellent long-term results are comparable to gastric bypass surgery. However, the LAP-BAND System offers many features that make it a far superior alternative. For starters, the LAP-BAND System is the least invasive surgical option. It requires no cutting or stapling of internal organs — just a small incision on your abdomen. As a result, there are far fewer risks and side effects. And the band is fully adjustable — or even reversible — enabling you to customize the fit over time for optimal weight loss and lifestyle maintenance.
The LAP-BAND System assists in weight loss by reducing the capacity of the stomach, which restricts the amount of solid food that can be consumed.
During the procedure, surgeons use small incisions and long-shafted instruments to implant an inflatable silicone band into the patient's abdomen. The band is fastened around the upper portion of the stomach to create a new, smaller stomach pouch that limits the amount of food you eat. The small outlet below this pouch slows the emptying process into the stomach and the intestines. This causes patients to feel an earlier sensation of fullness with smaller amounts of food consumed at meals, and absent or decreased cravings for snacking between meals, which results in weight loss.
The LAP-BAND System is also the only adjustable weight loss surgery available in the United States. Because the needs of each individual can change over time, the diameter of the band is adjustable. For example, pregnant patients can come in and have their band deflated to accommodate a growing fetus.
To adjust the size of the band, the physician can inflate or deflate it with saline solution. The band is connected to a port placed well under the skin during surgery. After the operation, the surgeon can control the amount of saline in the band by entering the port with a fine needle through the skin.
Your LAP-BAND System is as unique as you are. It will be adjusted throughout your weight-loss program to accommodate your changing needs. Adjustment needs vary, and are determined on an individual basis. Communication between you and your provider regarding types of food you are consuming, frequency of meals, hunger level in-between meals and your weight loss will all be factored in making the decision of whether you will need an adjustment at each visit.