Because Gastric Banding surgery uses an adjustable band, rather than a permanent surgical rearrangement of the stomach and intestines, it is a considerably less risky operation, compared to Gastric Bypass surgery.
Additionally, Gastric Band surgery is almost always performed Laparoscopically, which also reduces the risks, and involves a shorter stay in the weight loss clinic.
Unlike most weight loss surgery procedures, the Gastric Band procedure can be reversible. Gastric Balloon surgery is similar in this respect.
The weight loss associated with the Gastric Lap Band is not as fast as with other surgical procedures, but studies do tend to show that after a time, the loss of weight tends to even out between the different methods.
Like all weight loss surgery, the cost of getting Gastric Band surgery is generally very high, and many people, particularly from the US choose to travel abroad for their weight loss surgery, as it can be much cheaper, due to infrastructure costs.
For example, in Europe, Gastric Band Surgery costs between 20% and 50% less if you get your surgery abroad in Greece, the Czech Republic, Belgium or Romania.
In South America, the best prices are often found in Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama, and Argentina. Thailand, India, South Africa and Turkey are also all known to have excellent Bariatric surgeons, who can also provide overseas Gastric Band surgery at a much lower price.
The Gastric Band Procedure is one of the weight loss procedures most often suggested by Bariatric surgeons when the BMI is above 40, or when other medical conditions brought on by excessive weight are a risk to your health.
If you have tried using a diet and exercise program for weight loss, without success, and you are moderately to seriously obese, then Gastric Band surgery may be a solution for you.
Gastric Banding should, however, only be undertaken after consultation with a medical specialist.
Although once the Gastric Band was non-adjustable, an adjustable band is now the usual method.
An inflatable silicone band is placed around the top portion of the stomach, creating a small pouch.
The idea is that the pouch created by the gastric band restricts the amount of food intake that is possible, while the band slows down the progress of the food down to the lower part of the stomach.
By this method, weight is lost quickly, while the fact that the patient feels full from less food trains the gastric banding patient to eat smaller portions of food.
An adjustable Gastric Band can be inflated or deflated according to the situation. When the Gastric Band need to be inflated, a saline solution is injected into it, causing a greater restriction.
As with all surgery, infection is one risk of the gastric banding operation.
Because the Gastric Band procedure is a Laparoscopic one, meaning that it is a performed via key-hole surgery, risks and complications are far lower than with malabsorbtive weight loss surgeries such as the Gastric Bypass.
However this does not mean that the decision to get Gastric Lap Band surgery is not a very serious step. Slippage or erosion of the gastric band, along with gastritis and internal bleeding are possible complications.
Of cause, the risk is greatly if the surgeon is a Gastric Band specialist, at a reputable weight loss clinic.
Occasional adjustments of the gastric band will be necessary. Also, many gastric band patients have felt that belonging to a support group has helped them after their weight loss surgery.
A relatively quick recovery after surgery is typical, and a loss of 50% of excess weight can usually be achieved. This is dependent on the patient wanting their weight loss surgery to work, as some patients do find ways to cheat, and continue eating their normal intake of food. The right attitude is essential.
All weight loss surgery is quite pricey, and Gastric Banding is no exception. Savings can be made, however, by those willing to go abroad for their Gastric Band operation. Popular with UK residents, Greece, Belgium, the Czech Republic and Romania are all countries that can offer some substantially lower prices. Going to South America could save you 20% to 50% of the cost of Bariatric surgery, with Gastric Band surgery in Costa Rica, Panama, Argentina or Mexico costing much less money. India, Malaysia, Thailand and Turkey are also a good bet for getting a bargain. The important thing is to do a little research, and use a reputable clinic, as the most important thing is your health!