The Obesity Epidemic
Treatment Options
The LAP-BAND® Adjustable Gastric Band
LAP-BAND® System Surgery
Post-Surgery Diet and Nutrition
Living with the LAP-BAND® Adjustable Gastric Band
FAQ's
Glossary
How long will it take to recover after the surgery?
How much weight will I lose?
Can I eat anything in moderation?
Does the LAP-BAND® Adjustable Gastric Banding System require frequent visits to my doctor after surgery?
Read all the FAQ's about the LAP-BAND® System

 Treatment Options

Millions of Americans turn to diet, fitness, and medication first to treat their obesity. Unfortunately, studies indicate that people will not achieve long-term weight loss through dietary and behavior modification regimens alone. Morbidly obese people have an even greater challenge when it comes to sustaining weight loss and resolving their health conditions. Surgery may remain the best hope for these individuals to lose weight and keep it off.

NON-SURGICAL TREATMENTS
The most common weight-loss approach is to eat less, eat sensibly, and exercise more. However, many who lose weight using these tactics quickly regain it when the diet ends, which leads to more dieting, replacing meals with special drinks, or taking diet pills. The cycle of losing weight and gaining it back is called the "yo-yo effect." While temporary weight loss can help, the yo-yo effect can also make it harder to lose weight in the future.

The National Institutes of Health report that 90% of the people who participate in diets and weight-loss programs do not lose or sustain a significant amount of weight. Morbidly obese individuals may want to strongly consider weight-loss surgery when other therapies have failed.


SURGICAL TREATMENTS

If non-surgical methods have not helped you lose weight and keep if off, you still have another option. Studies demonstrate that weight-loss surgery, as compared to non-surgical treatments, yields the longest period of sustained weight loss in patients who have failed other therapies. But keep in mind that a positive attitude, self-discipline, and planning ahead are key to the success of the surgery. Surgery can help you achieve your long-term goal only if you are ready for the commitment of losing weight and keeping it off.

There are several categories of obesity (bariatric) surgery;

  • Restrictive- reduces the amount of food the stomach can hold but doesn't interfere with normal digestion of food and nutrients.
  • Malabsorptive- shortens the digestive tract to limit the number of calories and nutrients that can be absorbed.
  • Combination- restricts the amount of food the stomach can hold and reduces the number of calories and nutrients absorbed by altering the anatomy of the digestive tract.

VERTICAL BANDED GASTROPLASTY
Vertical Banded Gastroplasty is a restrictive procedure. The surgeon uses staples to make a small stomach pouch, thereby reducing the amount of food the stomach can hold. When your stomach is able to hold less food, you feel full sooner. At the same time, the stomach digests nutrients and calories in a normal way.

Advantages

  • Nutrients are fully absorbed
  • Simpler procedure than the Gastric Bypass
  • Lower risk of leakage or intestinal obstruction as compared to Gastric Bypass and Biliopancreatic Diversion (BPD)
  • Lower mortality rate than Gastric Bypass or BPD

Disadvantages

  • Rarely performed through minimally invasive approach
  • Requires cutting and stapling of the stomach
  • Slower initial weight loss than Gastric Bypass or BPD
  • Nonadjustable
  • Staple line disruption shortly after surgery can result in leakage, infection and even death
  • Staple line disruption at later time results in weight regain
  • Extremely difficult to reverse or convert to gastric bypass
  • Long term results are poor

BILIOPANCREATIC DIVERSION
Biliopancreatic Diversion (BPD) is a more malabsorptive procedure than gastric bypass and is a more extreme alteration of the digestive process. Roughly three-fourths of the stomach is removed, and the stomach pouch is connected to the final segment of the small intestines. By diverting food through this new "limb," the nutrients are separated from the bile and pancreatic enzymes that would break them down. As a result, BPD greatly reduces nutrient absorption and caloric intake.

Advantages

  • Greatest amount of initial weight loss due to the high levels of malabsorption
  • Allows larger meals because of larger stomach pouch
  • Higher total average weight loss reported than with VBG, Gastric Bypass or LAP-BAND® Adjustable Gastric Banding System

Disadvantages

  • Requires cutting and stapling of stomach and bowel
  • More operative complications than with LAP-BAND® System, VBG or Gastric Bypass
  • Portion of digestive tract is bypassed, reducing the absorption of essential nutrients
  • Medical complications due to nutritional deficiencies
  • Requires lifelong monitoring for protein malnutrition, anemia, and bone disease
  • Increased risk of intestinal irritation and ulcers
  • Nonadjustable
  • Extremely difficult to reverse
  • "Dumping syndrome" can occur
  • Higher mortality rate than LAP-BAND® System , VBG and Gastric Bypass procedures.

ROUX-EN-Y GASTRIC BYPASS
Roux-en-y Gastric Bypass (RYGB) is a combination procedure using both restrictive and malabsorptive elements. With this surgery, first the stomach is stapled to make a smaller pouch. Then most of the stomach and part of the intestine are bypassed by attaching (usually stapling a piece of intestine to the small stomach pouch. The result is that you cannot eat as much and you absorb fewer nutrients and calories. For more indepth information on gastric bypass visit GastricBypass.com.

Advantages

  • Rapid initial weight loss
  • Minimally invasive approach is possible
  • Longer experience in the U.S.
  • Higher total average weight loss reported than with LAP-BAND® System or VGB
  • Produces fullness and satiety with the smaller portions

Disadvantages

  • Requires cutting and stapling of stomach and bowel
  • More operative complications than with LAP-BAND® Adjustable Gastric Banding System
  • Portion of digestive tract is bypassed, reducing absorption of essential nutrients
  • Medical complications due to nutritional deficiencies may occur
  • Requires lifelong monitoring for protein malnutrition, anemia, and bone disease
  • "Dumping syndrome" can occur
  • Nonadjustable
  • Extremely difficult to reverse
  • Higher mortality rate than LAP-BAND® System or VBG procedures

LAP-BAND® Adjustable Gastric Banding System
The LAP-BAND® Adjustable Gastric Banding System procedure restricts the amount of food the stomach can hold by placing an inflatable silicone band around the upper part of the stomach. The new, small upper stomach pouch limits the amount of food that can be consumed at one time, and a narrowed stomach outlet increases the time it takes for the stomach to empty. The subsequent reduction in food intake results in weight loss.

Advantages

  • Lowest mortality rate
  • Least invasive surgical approach
  • No stomach stapling or cutting, or intestinal re-routing
  • Adjustable
  • Reversible
  • Lowest operative complication rate
  • Lowest malnutrition risk

Disadvantages

  • Slower initial weight loss than Gastric Bypass or BPD
  • Regular follow-up critical for optimal results
  • Requires an implanted medical device
  • In some cases, effectiveness can be reduced due to band slippage
  • In some cases, the access port may leak and require minor revisional surgery
As with any surgery, there are specific risks and possible complications associated with the LAP-BAND® System Surgery . Talk to your doctor to determine if you are a candidate for the LAP-BAND® System.