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The Adjustable Gastric Band – often called the band – involves an inflatable band that is placed around the upper portion of the stomach, creating a small stomach pouch above the band, and the rest of the stomach below the band. The clinical impact of the band seems to be that it reduces hunger, which helps the patients to decrease the amount of calories that are consumed.

Advantages:

  • Reduces the amount of food the stomach can hold
  • Induces excess weight loss of approximately 40 – 50 percent
  • Involves no cutting of the stomach or rerouting of the intestines
  • Requires a shorter hospital stay, usually less than 24 hours, with some centers discharging the patient the same day as surgery
  • Is reversible and adjustable
  • Has the lowest rate of early postoperative complications and mortality among the approved bariatric procedures
  • Has the lowest risk for vitamin/mineral deficiencies

Disadvantages:

  • Slower and less early weight loss than other surgical procedures
  • Greater percentage of patients failing to lose at least 50 percent of excess body weight compared to the other surgeries commonly performed
  • Requires a foreign device to remain in the body
  • Can result in possible band slippage or band erosion into the stomach in a small percentage of patients
  • Can have mechanical problems with the band, tube or port in a small percentage of patients
  • Can result in dilation of the oesophagus if the patient overeats
  • Requires strict adherence to the postoperative diet and to postoperative follow-up visits
  • Highest rate of re-operation