By A. Nutt

With lap band surgery becoming more and more of a standard treatment for obesity, people are starting to consider it as an alternative to failed diet and exercise plans. The procedure itself is far less risky and easier than the previously used gastric bypass surgery, which is still used in extreme cases, and has made it a possibility for many people to lose weight even when they have failed in all other attempts.

What Is Lap Band Surgery?

Basically, in this procedure a small incision is made and the band is inserted and fastened around the top part of the stomach. Later, when the port is healed, the doctor will inflate the band to squeeze off a part of the stomach, creating a little pouch at the top. The amount of food that will fit into this pouch is very little, usually just a few mouthfuls.

The band can be inflated more or deflated to provide just the right amount of pressure on the stomach for optimum weight loss for the patient. The procedure itself takes around an hour to perform and has become a simple process with the latest techniques and technology.


How Long Is the Hospital Stay?

Each patient is different, but the majority of patients will be able to leave the hospital 24 hours after the surgery. This is obviously dependent on whether or not the lap band was the only surgery performed, since some patients prefer to combine this with another surgery, such as a hernia repair. It will also depend on whether or not there are any complications. The most common problem is infection, which is always an issue with any operation. Another issue may be a latex intolerance, in which case the band would need to be removed.

After 24 hours, if the doctor feels that the lap band patient is recovering well, he will be discharged. While you can go home at this point, it`s not recommended that you drive, lift anything heavy or head back to work for at least another four to six days. Most people need to take at least a week off from work to recuperate from the surgery.

Recovery from Lap Band Surgery

For the first few days after your surgery, you`ll only be able to drink clear fluids, like juice or broth. Avoiding solid foods will let your system recover and give your body time to heal. Once you start eating again, it`s a good idea to begin with soft, bland foods to avoid potential irritations. Vomiting is to be avoided at all costs since it can stretch the pouch formed by the band and make the band less effective in the long run.

For anyone who has spent years struggling with their weight and all the health issues that come along with having to carry too many extra pounds, lap band surgery could be the answer. Less invasive than gastric bypass, it`s also a reversible option which appeals to many, and the hospital stay is short and easy as long as there are no complications.

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