What Is It And Who Is It For?
This procedure consists of placing a silicone band with a soft balloon on its inner side around the stomach. It divides the stomach into two parts similar to an hourglass. It is a restrictive bariatric method which helps patients reduce the amount of food they eat. The patient can eat normally but a much smaller amount, because the smaller upper part of the stomach is filled quickly and registers as full. Then the food slowly passes down through the band into the lower part.
The band is adjustable, because the size of the stomach narrowing can be regulated by filling or emptying the balloon on the band. A special access port is implanted under the patient’s skin, which makes easy access possible to the balloon when adjustments are needed. The balloon is left empty after the operation and the adjustments are planned by the doctor according to the weight loss results, the sensation of fullness and the patient’s general state.
The main advantage of gastric band is its reversibility as there are no changes in the anatomy of the digestive tract. Similarly, no changes in digestion or food absorption are made.
The band is a treatment designed for obese patients with a BMI (body mass index) over 40 or for those with a BMI between 35 and 40 who also suffer from additional problems such as hypertension or diabetes. Other obese patients who have repeatedly failed to lose weight with the help of conservative treatment can also opt for it.