Knowledge is power, and support is just as important for people who are considering, or who have had stomach banding surgery. Our surgical practice takes much pride in the amount of information and support we provide. Another very helpful resource is an online forum, a Yahoo Group called “Smartbandsters.” For those of you who need some support from other lap band patients, this is an excellent place to start.
Another critical element of lap band surgery success is to take advantage of the services your lap band surgeon offers. Stomach banding surgery is more than an operation, it is a complete lifestyle change. Your lap band surgeon should offer programs that optimize your success, anything from classes to videos, to podcasts and newsletters, to support groups. If not, it’s like having only half of the lap band.
When I talk about “aftercare,” I’m speaking of additional services post surgery. In our practice, we have not yet found a surgical patient who doesn’t find great benefit from this support. We go as far as to say that while many candidates for lap band surgery will take the time to research the lap band surgeon and the cost of lap band surgery, most patients don’t investigate to find out about the type of support they provide AFTER surgery. Fellow patients and lap band advocates are helpful, but real support comes from professionals in their office who have extensive experience with the lap band. Having lap band surgery is of course critical, however learning how to properly use the lap band is even more important.
Let me stress one thing again– professionals– those with medical degrees, are key to support. There are many patients who have experience – but what works for them may not work for you. So when you find someone who wants to offer support- gently ask what their background is. Too often we’ve had patients get “advice” from people who were successful with one form of weight loss surgery, but have no real background in medicine, nutrition, or anything more than “experience.” Trust me, experience is key, and a medical professional should be on your team of trusted advisors, especially when it involves surgery.
I invite you to attend one of our monthly lap band information seminars, or visit our websites at your leisure. Our practice invites questions, and our staff is not only knowledgeable about the lap band, but also has the most up-to-date information regarding pricing and even insurance information for lap band surgery. To begin to win your weight loss battle, gather up the information and tools you need, the ones that will offer you the greatest chances of success. Very soon I will be kicking off a meal planning program that will really change the way you eat, and help guide you to better nutrition. Look for that announcement soon, and be sure to watch our videos and read our blog. Our goal is to educate you on the lap band and the lifestyle change it brings.
Dr Terry Simpson
Dr. Terry Simpson is a Phoenix weight loss surgeon. He encourages his lap-band surgery patients to learn to cook and adopt healthier lifestyles. His goal is to use culinary medicine to keep patients out of his operating room. in 2017, Dr. Simpson became a Certified Culinary Medicine Specialist.