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Minimally Invasive

laparoscopic adjustable gastric band

The laparoscopic adjustable gastric band is a restrictive device that controls how much you eat and controls your hunger. Adjustments through a port underneath the skin will allow tightening of the band to lose weight, or loosening of the band if there are problems. The diet restrictions are in fact stricter than with a sleeve or bypass. It’s less effective than the gastric bypass and gastric sleeve. The 2 types of bands are the LapBand and the Realize Band; the Realize band is no longer manufactured, so Dr. Suggs now places the latest, most technologically advanced LapBand ever made. Dr. Suggs has been preforming the band surgery for nearly 20 years. The surgery is performed laparoscopically through tiny incisions, and most people go home from the hospital the same day. Most patients are back to work in 1-2 weeks, but often in less time.

how it works

  • Slow, gradual weight loss

  • Increases the hormone Ghrelin levels
  • Restricts how much one can eat by increasing the tightness of the band around the upper stomach
  • Frequent adjustments and dietary compliance are critical for success
  • Proven reduction of comorbidities

results

  • Average of 50% excess weight loss*
  • Fastest weight loss in 1st year, aiming for 1-2 pounds per week
  • Requires frequent adjustments to achieve weight loss, one a month for the first year to year and a half.
  • Will always require adjustments every year or 2, or the weight will be regained
  • Generally, not hungry if it’s properly adjusted

risks

As with any surgery, there can be risks like bleeding or infection (both very low risk). If one has acid reflux, the band is too tight. If the band if ever too tight, fluid needs to be removed through the port. The risk of band slippage, which could require taking fluid out of the band or even surgery to fix the slip, increases with time. Eventually, all implantable devices including the band will stop functioning or break.

qualifications

  • BMI 30-34 with comorbidities and or a BMI 35+ no comorbidities necessary.
  • Age 18-70 years
  • Previous failed attempts at dieting.

insurance coverage

If your insurance covers bariatric surgery, they should cover the laparoscopic adjustable gastric band. However, they will not cover it for patients with a BMI of less than 35. And, they may not cover adjustments of the band, especially if you lose coverage for bariatrics. Medicare only covers adjustments once every 90 days.

Note that you will have copays and deductibles. Note that most insurances also have additional requirements for approval for surgery, such as 6-months of physician supervised diet, 3 years of primary care physician records, and psychology clearance.

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