Pros and Cons of the Adjustable Gastric Band

Dr. Mustafa Ahmed

The adjustable gastric band or LAP-BAND® procedure, restricts the amount of food by promoting a feeling of fullness after eating just a small amount.

Weight loss surgery is not a quick fix for weight loss and it is not for everyone. But for those who are obese and suffer from obesity-related conditions and who have been unsuccessful at sustaining weight loss by other means, weight loss surgery (or bariatric surgery) might be the solution that finally enables them to lose weight permanently and dramatically improve their health. “Eligibility for surgery is determined by a combination of medical and psychological factors,” says bariatric surgeon Dr. Mustafa Ahmed. “Those who are eligible and make the decision for surgery must make a life-long commitment to maintaining healthy diet and exercise habits. But first they must decide – along with the help of their doctor – which surgery is right for them.”

There are several types of surgery that make changes to the stomach or intestines that induce weight loss. Some procedures achieve that goal by restricting the amount of food the stomach can hold, some by restricting the nutrients than can be absorbed, some by a combination of the two. One option is the adjustable gastric band or LAP-BAND® procedure, which restricts the amount of food by promoting a feeling of fullness after eating just a small amount. Dr. Ahmed described the procedure and its advantages and disadvantages.

How does the adjustable gastric band work?

The surgeon places a soft silicone band around the top part of the stomach to create a small pouch to hold food, effectively creating a two-compartment stomach. The patient feels full after eating enough food to fill only the…

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