LAP-BAND® System Surgery
For many of our patients, the LAP-BAND® System surgery performed at our La Jolla practice – convenient to North County and metro San Diego – is the best option for weight loss. Rather than permanently reconfiguring the digestive tract, this procedure uses an adjustable gastric band to constrict the upper part of the stomach. The opening between the stomach pouch and the rest of the stomach be adjusted to meet the needs of the patient, and the band can be removed at a later date if it becomes necessary.
Like gastric bypass, LAP-BAND® System surgery is performed by our surgeons using "closed" laparoscopic techniques to minimize scarring, side effects, and risks associated with the procedure. During surgery, the band is carefully maneuvered into position around the stomach through an incision in the abdominal wall, creating a small stomach pouch.
During the regular outpatient follow up, the gastric band is filled with an injection of saline solution through an attached reservoir that has been implanted under the skin. This reservoir allows the doctor to change the tightness of the gastric band. When the “correct tightness” is reached, patients should feel full on small meals and have much less hunger than before surgery. If the patient is not losing weight, the band can be tightened, and if the patient is experiencing unpleasant side effects or losing too much weight the band can be loosened. These adjustments also make the post-surgical transition easier on the LAP-BAND® System surgery patient.
LAP-BAND® System surgery is less invasive than gastric bypass, with a shorter recovery time, but it is still a potentially risky surgical procedure and should not be taken lightly. Some patients who choose LAP-BAND® System surgery may lose weight less quickly than gastric bypass patients, but may also be less likely to regain the weight after losing it.
Before patients decide on LAP-BAND® System surgery, our surgeons will discuss all surgical options with them in detail to help them choose the right procedure.