Gastric Band

Clinically Proven Weight Loss

gastric band lapbandThe laparoscopic adjustable gastric band has been clinically proven as a weight loss tool.

The gastric band restricts the amount that someone can eat in a number of ways

  • Reduces appetite
  • Reduces the stomach’s capacity

After surgery, patients feel full sooner and for longer

Weight loss with the gastric band offers a range of health benefits and is recommended for patients who are very overweight to try to achieve substantial and permanent weight loss.

How does gastric banding work?

The bariatric surgeon fits an inflatable band around the stomach to divide it into two parts. The smaller half of the stomach at the top takes less food to make you feel full.

Food then passes slowly through the opening left by the band into the lower half of the stomach. After that, the food continues on into your intestines as normal.

Once the band is in place, gastric band adjustment can be carried out by inflating (a “gastric band fill”) or deflating it (“gastric band aspiration”).

This is done by injecting it with sterile fluid through a small tube from a reservoir which is attached just under your skin.  The gastric band can be adjusted in this way to control the rate of weight loss until the right level of restriction is established. It usually takes at least two adjustments to complete. The first one is usually six weeks after surgery.

What does the gastric band operation involve?

The gastric band procedure is relatively straightforward. It is carried out laparoscopically, which is also known as keyhole surgery. This means that the surgeon makes five to six small incisions (cuts) in the abdomen (belly) to get to the stomach. The surgeon may decide to convert to an open procedure (the conventional way of carrying out this operation through a longer incision) if they think it would be safer.

The operation typically takes approximately one hour.  In some circumstances the operation can take longer e.g. depending on body-build or previous surgery.

Benefits of gastric band surgery

  • When combined with a supervised diet, increased activity and behaviour modification, it can lead to long-term weight loss
  • The health benefits associated with the gastric band include its potential to cure or significantly improve a variety of specific conditions, including:
    • Diabetes (type 2)
    • Sleep apnoea
    • Hypertension
    • High cholesterol (Dyslipidaemia)
    • Reflux disease/indigestion
    • Stress incontinence
    • Asthma episodes
    • Joint / muscle pain
    • Infertility
  • Weight loss is more than with non-surgical programmes alone.
  • Average excess weight loss is 50% (for example, if a patient is 10 stone overweight then we would expect him/her to lose on average 5 stone).

We feel it is important for patients to have a clear view of the commitments and risks associated with this surgery. However, these have to be balanced against the longer-term risks of remaining severely overweight. This should be fully discussed with your bariatric surgeon at the time of your consultation.