Laparoscopic gastric banding, or the "lap band" procedure, involves the placement of an adjustable gastric band around the top part of the stomach, which divides it into two parts: a small upper pouch and a lower stomach. The size of the gastric lap band is adjusted using a port placed under your skin. Adjusting the lap band changes how much you can eat and how quickly food leaves the new pouch so patients feel full sooner and longer than usual.
Gastric banding surgery risks include, but are not limited to: gastric perforation, port leakage or twisting, lack of satiety, reflux, nausea and vomiting, infection, outlet obstruction, pouch or esophageal dilation and band slippage.
The ideal candidate for the lap band procedure will have a Body Mass Index (BMI) above 40, or approximately 100 pounds overweight for men, and 80 pounds for women. Lap band surgery may also be an option for people with a BMI between 35 and 40 who suffer from chronic or life threatening complications associated with obesity.
The gastric lap band procedure is fully reversible when medically indicated and does not involve the use of cutting or staples. A few of the additional benefits of laparoscopic gastric banding (as compared to other weight loss surgery options) include:
• Short hospital stay
• Quick recovery
• Adjustable without additional surgery
• No nutrition issues (because no intestines are bypassed)
Watch an animation about what happens during the gastric banding procedure.