Gastric band surgery
The goal of a gastric band surgery is to reduce food intake. Through laying the ASGB (adjustable silicone gastric band), which has an elastic vessel, into the upper part of the stomach, the latter is parted in two. This way less food can be eaten, while still feeling a longer period of satiety.
The small, upper part can be referred to as the “pre-stomach” and is connected to the rest of the stomach through a little opening. The stoma-diameter can be enlarged or decreased through adding or removing liquid in the elastic part of the band, also after the surgery.
This is a large advantage; The stoma can be made smaller if the patient is either not losing the desired weight or eating too large portions in short time spans. It can also be enlarged, in cases that patients have difficulties with the intake of liquid nutrition, or if they frequently vomit.
Surgical insertion of the gastric band happens vie laparoscopy. A gastric band is the only surgical weight loss method that allows the stomach to return to its original state after removal.
Risks and long-term results
The gastric band surgery was developed for safe and far-reaching weight loss, for pathologically obese patients. At the same time though, eating habits must be changed or adjusted to reach and maintain the result.
The average weight loss with a gastric band can be compared to that of the gastric bypass. After six moths you lose about 20-40% of your overweight, after a year about 58% and after 4 years about 65%.
The weight loss happens in phases. There are two phases in which no weight is lost at all, over the course of 3-4 weeks. That is completely normal and should not discourage you.
Usually it takes around two years to reach your lasting weight result.
The gastric band can be easily removed via surgery but should be left in the body for a lifetime, to avoid reoccurring weight gain.
Specific risks of the gastric band aside from possible post-surgical complications:
Swelling of the gastric mucosa, gastritis, leaky tube, balloon or injection-reservoir. Those would lead to new surgery.