Memorial Health Bariatrics performs the adjustable gastric band surgical procedure. This procedure is growing in popularity because it has fewer risks than gastric bypass surgery.
In this procedure, the surgeon places a silicone ring around the upper stomach to create a very small (20 cc) stomach pouch. The silicone ring is attached to a small reservoir that is implanted under the skin. When the band needs to be tightened or loosened, this reservoir is accessed with a needle through the skin.
This is a restrictive procedure that works by making the stomach smaller. Patients feel full with much less food and lose their appetite if the band is appropriately adjusted.
The average excess weight loss after the adjustable gastric band is slower than with the gastric bypass. One year after surgery, weight loss can average 40 percent of excess body weight. The weight loss continues slowly in years two and three. By the end of the third year, the weight loss is 75 percent, which equals the results with gastric bypass.
Studies show that after 10 to 14 years, 50 to 60 percent of excess body weight loss has been maintained by some patients.
In almost all patients, the adjustable gastric band surgery can be performed laparoscopically. When a laparoscopic operation is performed, a small video camera is inserted into the abdomen. The surgeon views the procedure on a separate video monitor. Most laparoscopic surgeons believe this gives them better visualization and access to key anatomical structures.
The camera and surgical instruments are inserted through small incisions made in the abdominal wall. This approach is less invasive because it replaces the need for one long incision to open the abdomen. A recent study shows that patients having had laparoscopic weight loss surgery experience less pain after surgery, resulting in easier breathing and lung function and higher overall oxygen levels. Other realized benefits with laparoscopy include fewer wound complications such as infection or hernia, and a quicker return to pre-surgical levels of activity.