Gastric banding involves inserting an adjustable silicone band around the upper part of your stomach. It works by making you feel full sooner so that you eat less (see figure 1).
If your BMI score is over 40, surgery may help you to achieve long-term weight loss. Surgery may also help if you have a BMI over 35 and have other medical problems such as Type 2 diabetes or high blood pressure.
Your surgeon will confirm your BMI score and carry out a detailed assessment before deciding if surgery is suitable for you.
You should be able to achieve long-term weight loss, but this depends on your ability to keep to your new lifestyle.
Long-term weight loss should improve most obesity-related health problems you may have.
The simple approach to losing weight involves eating less, improving your diet and doing more exercise. Sometimes medication given by your GP can help.
There are other surgical options to gastric banding, such as shortening your digestive tract, sleeve gastrectomy and gastric bypass.
It may be possible to have a gastric balloon, but a gastric balloon can stay in place for only up to nine months.
Many studies have been carried out to find if silicone is safe. There is no evidence to suggest that people with gastric bands have a higher risk of getting diseases such as cancer and arthritis.
The operation is performed under a general anaesthetic and usually takes one to two hours.
Your surgeon will make several small cuts on your abdomen. They will insert surgical instruments, along with a telescope, so they can see inside your abdomen and perform the operation.
Your surgeon will create a tunnel behind your stomach. They will pass the band around the upper part of your stomach to create a smaller upper pouch. Your surgeon will usually fold some of the lower stomach over the band and stitch it to the upper stomach pouch.
You should be able to go home the next day. However, you may be able to go home the same day.
You will be able to take only liquids for a few weeks, progressing to soft food and then, after four to six weeks, to solid food.
You should be able to return to work after one to two weeks, depending on the extent of surgery and your type of work.
Regular exercise should help you to return to normal activities as soon as possible. Before you start exercising, ask the healthcare team or your GP for advice.
On average, people who have gastric banding lose over half their excess body weight.
Author: Mr Ian Beckingham DM FRCS
Illustrations: Medical Illustration Copyright © Medical-Artist.com
Expected length of hospital stay
Up to two nights stay
Private Laparoscopic Gastric Banding treatment prices.
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HCA Healthcare UK hospitals offering Weight Loss Surgery treatments
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Consultants offering Weight Loss Surgery treatments
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Private Weight Loss Surgery treatments at HCA Healthcare UK.
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