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The LAP-BAND is another weight loss option available to bariatric candidates. It is a silicone band which is placed around the top part of the stomach resulting in the creation of a small pouch designed to hold around an ounce of food. As a result, less food is needed for a person to feel full. Since it was approved by the FDA in June 2001, over 650,000 people have chosen the LAP-BAND as their preferred method of attaining long term weight loss.
The LAP-BAND is adjustable, removable and presents a lesser risk to patients who have additional health problems that may make gastric bypass too risky. The LAP-BAND is inserted laparoscopically as opposed to an open surgery. Laparoscopic surgery is much less invasive. It typically requires 3-5 small incisions through which the surgeon inserts a laparoscope, a small tube with a camera that allows him to clearly see the stomach. The LAP-BAND is then inserted then moved into place to create the small pouch previously mentioned.
LAP-BAND surgery, as with other bariatric procedures, requires long term follow up as complications related to the mechanical device can occur even years later.