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Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding

The Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Band has been performed in Australia, since 1994.

The gastric band is an inflatable silicone ring that is placed and secured around the upper part of the stomach via laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery. The band applies a constant, gentle pressure to the top of the stomach; this mechanism slows the foods’ movement into the stomach, in turn giving the feeling of satiety (a sense of fullness) on a smaller amount of food.

The gastric band has a small port attached, that is placed internally in the abdomen. Fluid (saline) can then be inserted or removed to control the restriction of the band. These adjustments (or ‘band-fills’) are performed more frequently in the first year, and then usually on an as-needed basis.

Although the Gastric Band can be removed, it is designed to be placed permanently.

The gradual, average weight loss expected with the Gastric Band is approximately 50% Excess Weight Loss (EWL) which is around 26kg.

Advantages of Gastric Banding

  • Keyhole approach means less scarring or wound problems than other surgical options
  • Earlier return to work than other surgical options (1-2 weeks)
  • Adjustable: by filling port the outlet size can be reduced
  • Reversible: By removing fluid or the band.
  • Lower risk of malabsorption
  • Lower major complication risk than other surgical options

Disadvantages of Gastric Banding

  • Easy to cheat (with chocolates, sweets and the like).
  • Mechanical problems:
    • Prolapse
    • Pouch dilatation
    • Band/stomach obstruction
    • Slippage of the band into the stomach
    • Infection of the band or port leak
  • Revisions (further surgeries) may be required

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