The Lap-Band remains a great choice for weight loss. Here is why:
(a) It is an outpatient procedure
(b) It is the safest of all weight loss procedures
(c) It doesn’t remove bits of stomach
(d) You can always take it out if you don’t tolerate it
(e) It can last a lifetime
You may have heard that “no one” does the Lap-Band anymore. Or that you have a friend who had a “Lap-Band” and they didn’t do well so they said that the “Lap-Band failed.” Or heard some weight loss surgeon say that they “take out more Lap-Bands” than they put back in. So I want to address each of those and then answer any questions you might have.
The Lap-Band Failed
The band didn’t fail, if someone regains weight it isn’t the fault of the device. The Lap-Band is a tool, and like any tool you have to use it. If your friend ate junk, it doesn’t matter what weight loss operation they had – they will regain weight. The band works well as a tool, but it won’t tell you when to stop eating or what food you should eat. That is your job. You are an adult, the band will reinforce good choices, but it won’t make those for you. The Lap-Band is a great operation for an adult, not for someone who wants their operation to make their choices. You remember when you were a teenager and your parents made your choices? What happened when you made your choices? Same with the band – if you want an operation to make your choices then the band isn’t for you. Neither, by the way, are any other operation. What is for you is a need to grow up.
Surgeon says they take out more Lap-Bands than they put in
About five years ago the maker of the Lap-Band took a whole bunch of surgeons off their registry. These surgeons didn’t support the band – they didn’t see patients regularly for adjustments or care. That was a good move. The only person you want placing your band is someone who has a practice that is dedicated to supporting the band. That was not the case. When you read of surgeons who only see patients every four months after the band it is a recipe for failure.
One well-known weight loss surgeon bragged that because of the downturn in bariatric procedures his practice was kept alive by taking out lap-bands and converting people to other operations. Sometimes a band can “slip” – although it really doesn’t slip, but that is another story. That can be fixed, the band doesn’t have to be removed. But surgeons make more by removing the band and converting to another operation.
There are a number of dedicated Lap-Band practices. With surgeons who support the band and will help you learn to live with your band and lose weight. But if the band isn’t for you, if it doesn’t work – it can be converted to another operation.
Compare the Lap-Band to other weight loss procedures:
Compared to the gastric balloon — these are only meant to be in the stomach for six months. The Lap-Band will suppress appetite for your lifetime.
Compared to Prescription drugs – these are not meant to be a permanent solution, but they are temporary. The band will be there and suppress appetite on a permanent basis.
Compared to HCG. HCG, and RM3 have been shown, in great studies, to not work. The band has been shown to work.
Compared to other operations for weight loss. It is the only FDA approved for low BMI patients (those with less than 100 pounds to lose). It is safer and in the hands of a Lap-Band practice that will dedicate time and resources, the band works well. The band can always be adjusted, once you have had your other weight loss operation you are done.
Want proof? Consider Jineane Ford – who had her band placed in 2006 and still looks great years later. Former Ms USA, and former television anchor, she tried every diet and exercise program and only the Lap-Band has helped her keep off her weight and get off blood pressure medications.