Laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding is popular, minimally invasive, and reversible weight loss procedure that helps people to lose weight by decreasing the size of the stomach. Gastric band (lap-band, A band, or LAGB) is a silicone device that is placed around the stomach. The procedure is approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and is getting more and more popular among those who want to lose weight but can’t do it with diet and exercises.
Gastric band definition
Gastric band, also known as a lap-band, A band, or laparoscopic adjustable gastric band (LAGB) is a device which is placed round the stomach to reduce the amount of food consumed by the patient. The device is created in order to help obese people lose weight. After the placement of the gastric band, the patient starts to feel fool sooner, eats less and as a result loses weight.
Benefits of gastric band surgery:
- Does not create any malabsorption – all food consumed is digested and absorbed normally
- No need to cut the stomach
- The lowest risk for vitamin or mineral deficiencies
- Fast recovery
- Minimal scarring
- Adjustable weight loss
Gastric band candidates
An adult with a BMI of 40, who previously tried to lose weight without surgery can be a candidate for the gastric band surgery. If your BMI does not exceed 40 and you have some health problems connected with obesity, you can also be accepted as a candidate for the gastric band surgery. You are not a candidate for the gastric band surgery if you are drug/alcohol addicted, or have an uncontrolled psychiatric illness. Your expectation towards the results must be realistic and you should understand that losing weight demands lifestyle changes.
Gastric band prices
There are several factors that influence the price of gastric band surgery. The most important one is the country in which the clinic is located. Poland is the country that has cheap prices for everything including gastric band surgery. You should understand that the final price is always given after the direct consultation with a doctor in the clinic. Below you will see gastric band price comparison which proves that the price for this surgery in Poland is unbelievably cheaper than in e.g. the UK or Germany.
Gastric band abroad price comparison
Gastric band procedure:
Before the gastric band surgery:
Before the gastric band surgery, you will attend the personal consultation with your surgeon, during which he will make all necessary medical tests. If you decide to have gastric band surgery done in Poland, these will be included in the price of the surgery. 5-7 days before the surgery, you will be placed on a liquid diet in order to make your liver smaller, which is needed for the safety of the surgery.
Required medical tests: Abdominal ultrasound, Colonoscopy, blood count (CBC), creatinine, cortisol, electrolytes, blood urea nitrogen (BUN), prolactin and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), Cardiac catheterization, Echocardiogram Electrocardiogram (EKG), Flexible sigmoidoscopy, Chest X-ray, Mammogram, Pap smear, Pulmonary function tests, Pelvic ultrasound.
Gastric band surgery
The surgery is done using laparoscopic techniques, the camera and the band are inserted through small incisions in the stomach. Usually, the surgeon makes 5 incisions, then he places the gastric band (which has a shape of a ring) and clips it around the top of your stomach. The band is connected to a tube which has a port situated above abdominal muscles, still under skin, with the use of this port, the doctor can change the size of the narrow opening by adding or subtracting saline. As the procedure is performed under general anesthesia, and hence you need to stay in the clinic for 1 night, but the next day most patients can go home.
Length of gastric band procedure: 30-40 minutes
Type of anesthesia: general anesthesia
Stay in the clinic: 1 day
Minimal stay for gastric band in Poland: 1 week
Back to work: 1 week
After the gastric band surgery:
For the first 3 days after gastric band surgery, you should have someone who will take care of you. You should follow the instructions of your surgeon, eat small portions and avoid sugars, fats, alcohol, and soda. After the surgery, as soon as possible you need to start walking and exercising, remember that reduce the size of your stomach and calorie intake is not enough to lose weight. One of the most important things that you need to do is keep yourself hydrated (it is advised to drink about 2 liters of water each day).
Gastric band results:
You can lose even 80% of your excess body weight, final results depend on how you follow the diet and exercise plan. On average, patients lose 50% of their excess body weight. The gastric band is a long term weight loss procedure, so if you continue to eat healthily and exercise the results might be impressive. Most patients experience huge health improvement such as remission of type 2 diabetes, resolved sleep apnea and high blood pressure. After gastric band surgery, in order to achieve better results, patients often have plastic surgeries that remove loose skin such as tummy tuck and lipectomy.
Gastric band risks and complications:
Even though the gastric band is known as one of the safest weight loss surgeries, it still surgery and involves some risks. Possible risks are:
- Damage to organs
- Migration of implant
- Deep venous thrombosis
- Risks associating with anesthesia
The gastric band is a safe procedure which has a high success rate
To be a candidate for the gastric band surgery, you must have BMI (body mass index) of 40 or greater, if your BMI is lower but you have problems with health that are related to obesity, you can also consider having gastric bypass surgery. The gastric band is a 100% reversible procedure that has a lower complication risk than other weight-loss surgeries. The band is a silicone device that is placed around the upper stomach as soon as it is placed it is closed or locked in order to create two chambers in the stomach. The upper stomach will have a small narrow opening to the lower stomach which means that the device does not change your digestive system and you won’t have any nutritional deficiencies. The result of the surgery is that your stomach no longer can hold as much food as it did before and this makes you eat less and lose weight.
– Important information regarding gastric band surgery in Poland:
|Price of gastric band||€ 5000|
|Length of gastric band procedure||30-40 minutes|
|Required medical tests||Abdominal ultrasound, blood count (CBC), blood urea nitrogen (BUN), cortisol, creatinine, electrolytes, prolactin and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), Cardiac catheterization, Chest X-ray, Colonoscopy Echocardiogram Electrocardiogram (EKG) Flexible sigmoidoscopy, Mammogram, Pap smear, Pelvic ultrasound, Pulmonary function tests|
|Stay in the clinic||1 day|
|Stay in Poland||1 week|
|Back to work||1 week|
|Contraindications||constipation, adhesive peritonitis or significant hiatal hernia, diagnosed severe kidney, liver or lung disorders, chronic steroid treatment|
The gastric band does not require any cutting or stapling of the stomach
The gastric band placement is done using laparoscopic techniques, during the surgery the surgeon will make from one to five small incisions in the abdomen, through which he will insert the device. The laparoscopic technique does not require any stomach cutting, stapling, or gastrointestinal re-routing which makes the procedure safer than other weight-loss surgeries.
The gastric band helps you meet your weight loss goals
A gastric band can be used for long-term weight loss. One of the biggest advantages of the gastric band procedure is that the doctor can change the size of the narrow opening by adding or subtracting saline. It allows him to control your weight loss process. Generally, patients lose around 50% of excess body weight. Final results depend on how you follow the diet and exercise plan, they may be as good as 82% or as bad as 25% or lower of excess weight lost.
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Frequently asked questions about the gastric band (FAQ)
What is a gastric band made of?
The gastric band is made of solid silicone. The device consists of 3 parts the band (placed around the stomach), the port (placed above the abdominal muscles but under the skin) and the thin length of tubing that connects the band to the port.
What happens during gastric band surgery?
Gastric band surgery is performed using laparoscopic techniques. During the surgery, the doctor makes 5 small cuts through which he inserts the band. The band is placed and clipped around the top of the stomach, then the doctor connects it to the port, which controls the size of the narrow opening. The surgery lasts 30-40 minutes and is done under general anesthesia.
How much weight will I lose?
The amount of weight varies from patient to patient. In general, patients lose 50% of their excess body weight. If you eat healthily and exercise regularly, you may lose 80% of your excess body weight. Your final results depend on you.
Can I have the gastric band removed?
Yes. The band can be removed surgically if desired. Or the doctor can simply remove all the saline from the band which means that the band can no longer affect your stomach or your digestive function.
How long will I be off work after gastric band surgery?
It depends on what type of work you have. In general, 1 week after the surgery a patient can go back to work. The time you can go back to work will be discussed with your doctor during the consultation.
How long does it take to recover from the gastric band?
As during the surgery, general anesthesia is used, it is advised to spend 1 night after the surgery in the clinic. 1 week after the surgery, most patients can go back to work. As soon as you feel well, you should start walking and light exercises, but more serious physical activities should be restarted in a month after gastric band surgery .
Will my food still be digested normally after gastric banding is performed?
Yes. The gastric band does not make changes to your digestive system, and all consumed food is digested and absorbed normally.
What is a band adjustment?
Adjustments are made by adding or removing fluid from the band, this is done through the port that is placed above the abdominal muscles, but under the skin. It allows the doctor to control your weight loss process and makes the gastric band a long-term weight loss procedure.
Will I need to take vitamin supplements?
One of the biggest advantages of gastric band procedure is that it does not make any changes to your digestive system, it means that your body will be able to absorb vitamins from food. However, to help you recover, the doctor might prescribe you some vitamins (B12, folic acid, and iron).
What scars will I have after gastric band surgery?
Today, the gastric band is performed using laparoscopic techniques, and scarring is minimal. The surgeon will make 4-5 incisions 1 cm wide during the procedure they are normally healed in 10-14 days. The scars should fade gradually.
Will I need plastic surgery for the excess skin after gastric band surgery?
It’s up to you. The amount of excess skin, you will have after the gastric band surgery, depends on your weight loss, age, and habits. If you decide to have plastic surgery to remove excess skin, we advise you to come to Poland, where our professional plastic surgeons can provide you with a high-quality tummy tuck or lipectomy at affordable prices.
What is the pre-op diet?
At least 5 days you need to follow a low-calorie diet. This is needed for a number of reasons, it reduces fat around the stomach and liver, it shrinks the size of the liver and as a result, your surgery becomes safer.
How long should I stay in Poland after gastric band surgery?
To have the gastric band surgery done in Poland, you need to stay in the country for 1 week. Usually, the first day you will have the consultation and medical tests, the next day the surgeon will perform the surgery. 1 night after the surgery, we advise you to stay in the clinic, in order for our doctors to take care of you, as you may experience some confusion, disorientation, or difficulty thinking clearly after general anesthesia. The rest of your stay you can spend at the hotel, and go sightseeing. On the third day after the surgery, you will have a check-up, during which the doctor will check if everything is ok with the band, provide you with all the instructions concerning your recovery, and give you his contact information.
Where is a gastric band port placed?
The gastric band port is placed under the skin in the abdomen. The exact location depends on the patient’s anatomy and surgeon’s preference and it might be the upper abdomen (the most common) or off to the left or right.
The newest studies recommend using mesh fixation of the gastric band port, as it can significantly reduce the incidence of port site flip page, minimizing the need for port repositioning operations.
Is the gastric band covered by NHS?
Yes, it is. but you must meet with the NHS criteria:
- your BMI is equal or more than 40, or your BMI is between 35 and 40 and you suffer from one obesity-related condition (for example type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure)
- you’ve tried dieting, exercise or other weight loss methods, but with no long-lasting effect
- you are ready to start following a healthy lifestyle and attending regular check-ups
- you are under the care of a specialist
What is gastric band erosion?
Gastric band erosion or band migration is a known complication following gastric band procedure. It occurs when the gastric band grows into the stomach. The band will no longer restrict food and it may become a cause for other complications, i.e. port site skin infection or abscess, or your band needing to be overfilled in order to work correctly. The first signs of erosion are an increased feeling of hunger and weight gain. The band migration usually happens up to two years after the surgery. It can be treated by removing the band and it happens to almost 10% of the patients.
How much does gastric band cost?
This operation is obsolete and the majority of the clinics would recommend gastric bypass or sleeve instead of the band. The cost of band varied from 4500 GBP in Poland to 9500 GBP in the UK.
What is gastric band removal?
It’s a surgical procedure of removing the gastric band. The surgeon will cut the capsule created by the body around the device, remove sutures and any scar tissue formed, as well as the band itself. The band, tube, and port will then be removed from the stomach through the incision. There are two main reasons why the band should be removed: first being that the treatment was unsuccessful and the patient didn’t lose weight, second being the complications, i.e. include band erosion, a band or port infection not curable with antibiotics, band intolerance (with symptoms like excessive nausea or vomiting), band slippage resulting in a bigger pouch than needed, dysphagia or excessive swallowing difficulty, esophageal dilatation or dysmotility, pouch dilation and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
Can a gastric band be removed?
Yes, the surgeon will cut the capsule created by the body around the device, remove sutures and any scar tissue formed, as well as the band itself. The band, tube, and port will then be removed from the stomach through the incision.
Can the gastric band cause cancer?
As studies show, gastric cancer in patients who have undergone bariatric surgery is rare.
Can gastric band surgery be reversed?
Yes, the gastric band can be removed if the weight loss is insufficient or if there are complications.
Can the gastric band cause diarrhea?
No. Although diarrhea or loose stools are mainly a potential side effect of sleeve gastrectomy or gastric bypass, it is rarely associated with the gastric band.
Can the gastric band affect pregnancy?
The study from 2014 shows that out of a group of 140 pregnant women after having lap band, none of them experienced gestational or obstetrical complications because of the gastric band. There can be surgical complications with the potential for a gastric band to slip or move during pregnancy which may lead to severe vomiting.
Can gastric band reverse diabetes?
As all the bariatric surgeries, the gastric band often improves the symptoms of type 2 diabetes or even puts type 2 diabetes into remission, even before patients start to lose weight.
The gastric band is the least effective, with remission rates of 50-60%, while the seldom-used biliopancreatic diversion, usually reserved for the most extreme cases of obesity, has remission rates of 95%. The effects of the gastric sleeve and gastric bypass are similar and they achieve remission rates of 80%.
Can the gastric band kill me?
No, it’s a safe surgical procedure and has a very low mortality rate of only 0.1%.
What can I eat after the gastric band?
The diet after gastric bypass progresses from a liquid, to pureed/soft and then to a modified normal diet. For the first 2 to 4 weeks you are allowed only liquid foods. Between the 2nd and 6th week after surgery you can eat soft/mashed food, i.e. soft foods tend to be anything well cooked that can be mashed with the back of a fork. After 6 weeks you can start to eat normal food and it’s healthier wholesome options, not junk food. It’s recommended to eat smaller portions with small bites, you should also chew well and stop eating when you feel fullness.
Can a gastric band cause acid reflux?
Yes, it happens pretty often when the band is too tight, however in patients already having reflux there has been noted a significant improvement in symptoms of GERD after gastric band placement.
Can the gastric band stretch my stomach?
No, by making a small pouch it regulates the food intake and it can make your stomach actually smaller than it was before the surgery.
Can anyone get a gastric band?
Only people with a BMI of 35 or more and with obesity-related diseases can have any kind of bariatric procedure. If someone has a BMI within the normal range (from 19 to 25) it is unlikely that there will be a benefit from the procedure.
Can gastric band slip?
Yes, it’s one of the well-known complications after the procedure. A slip occurs when the part of the stomach below the band slips up or prolapses through the band. Because of that the opening between the pouch and the lower stomach becomes narrower or is completely blocked. Symptoms of the slipped band are severe heartburn or reflux (GERD, pain when eating solid food, vomiting with solid foods, night cough, and chest pain or pressure. If you have any of those symptoms, you need to see your surgeon immediately. Sometimes just taking the fluid out of the band will allow the stomach to return to the previous position. Some band slips, however, require surgical repositioning of the band.
How does gastric band work?
The gastric band is a type of bariatric surgery and it involves placing a silicone band around the upper part of the stomach to decrease stomach size. Thanks to that the food intake is reduced. The band placed around the upper stomach has a tube attached that is accessible through a port under the skin of the abdomen. By using the port the surgeon injects saline solution into the band to inflate it to alter the degree of constriction around the stomach.
How gastric band is fitted?
It involves putting a silicone adjustable band around the top part of your stomach. The band placed around the upper stomach has a tube attached that is accessible through a port under the skin of the abdomen.
Can I have a gastric band without surgery?
No, it’s impossible. The surgery is done under general anesthesia and it’s just slightly invasive, as the surgeon uses laparoscopy involving small cuts in the belly.
Can a gastric band help me with a hiatal hernia?
Yes, usually hiatal hernia is repaired during the gastric band surgery, but there is a high occurrence of a hiatal hernia after band surgery as a complication of the surgery. A hiatal hernia may develop as a result of the longstanding restriction of the upper part of the stomach caused by the band. As the upper pouch distends it also moves up into the chest and may cause a cycle of distention, irritation, swelling, regurgitation and further increase is the size. That leads to surgical removal of the band, as when the upper pouch distends, it is the only solution.
Can a gastric band help me with PCOS?
Yes. As metabolic syndrome and obesity are related to PCOS, gastric band surgery may help in treating them. You must remember, that, losing weight will not cure the PCOS, but it may help in restoring a regular menstrual period.
Is it safe to have an MRI with a gastric band port?
Yes, as the gastric band has been tested for compatibility in the magnetic resonance environment and is MR Conditional. Band ports and surgical staples are made from a non-magnetic metal and do not cause any problems either with safety or the image.
Can the gastric band cause thyroid problems?
Many patients who need the gastric band have thyroid problems already. The surgery can only improve thyroid function.
Is the gastric band safe?
Gastric banding is considered the least invasive weight loss surgery and also the safest. If necessary, the procedure can be reversed, and in time the stomach returns to its normal size. However, this procedure is considered to be obsolete and bariatric surgeons suggest undergoing different types of procedures. As international studies show 1 in 10 people with a gastric band will need a further operation at some time in the future due to complications:
- Slippage of the band
- Erosion of the band.
- Leakage of the band
- Infection of the reservoir/port or tubing
- GERD or reflux
What if the gastric band fails?
If the gastric band fails, it should be removed and you can consider different revision surgery, i.e. gastric sleeve or gastric bypass.
Can I have the gastric band if I drink alcohol?
If your drink sporadically, that should be no problem. However, if you are addicted to alcohol, you are not eligible for the surgery, as it is one of the contraindications for the surgery.
Is gastric band surgery painful?
The surgery is done under general anesthesia, so you won’t be able to feel anything during the surgery. You may be a little sore for the next few days after the surgery, but painkillers received in the hospital should tackle this.
When I will see my gastric band results?
Every bariatric surgery requires a full commitment from the patient, as it means a complete change of the lifestyle. Commitment to diet and exercise after gastric band surgery will affect how soon you see results. The gastric band requires drastic changes in your diet – you need to eat healthy food in small portions.
What complications are possible after gastric band surgery?
In general, the gastric band may help in losing weight, but patients frequently experience problems with the device years after the procedure. The most common complications are vomiting (28.9% of the cases), indigestion (22.1%), acid reflux (14.8%), and nausea (5.4%). Among other complications are leaks in the band, pouch dilation, band’s slippage from its original position and band erosion into the lining of the stomach.
Beauty Poland will organize not only your procedure but also your stay
Beauty Poland is the company that will not only provide you with cheap gastric band surgery in one of the best clinics in Poland but also will be there for you at every step of your journey and stays. For our patients we offer an all-inclusive package, which includes consultation, medical tests, surgery, stay in the clinic, stay in the hotel and transfers during your stay. Our consultants are always ready to help you and to provide you with all the information about your procedure and stay. If you have any questions or want to book a visit do not hesitate to contact us. Poland is a perfect destination to have gastric band surgery abroad.
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