The term “Lap Band®” is a proprietary name for a medical device used in gastric banding surgery, a weight-loss surgery option that uses a soft silicone ring or band to restrict the size of the stomach. The band fits over a large portion of the stomach, and when tightened, it prevents food from entering that portion which means patients eat less and still feel full. The Lap Band® is hollow and can be adjusted by injecting fluid into the band through a small opening or port placed just below the skin's surface. Adjustments are quick and can be performed right in the doctor's office during a regular visit.
Gastric banding surgery is performed using a minimally-invasive technique through small incisions. A special instrument called a laparoscope is inserted through one incision, and a tiny camera on one end of the scope sends images of the stomach to a monitor where they can be seen by the doctor. Other instruments are used to slip the band over the stomach to form the “new,” smaller stomach. The port portion of the device is then implanted beneath the skin so it can be easily accessed. Once everything is in place, the incisions are closed and covered with small bandages.
Lap Band® surgery helps patients lose weight by restricting the amount of calories that can be consumed so patients eat less at each meal. Unlike gastric bypass surgery, the digestive tract remains unaltered and absorption of nutrients is largely unaffected. By adding or removing fluid, the stomach size can be adjusted as the patient's needs change. The gastric banding procedure is less extensive and invasive than some other procedures so recovery is faster and there are fewer potential complications. And finally, one of the biggest advantages of Lap Band® surgery is that unlike surgeries that remove or alter a portion of the digestive tract, the gastric band can be removed and surgery can be reversed.
If you are considering Lap Band surgery you must:
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