Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Band (Lap-Band) Surgery
Lap-Band surgery is a reversible procedure where an adjustable silicon band is placed around the upper section of the patient’s stomach. Adjusting the size of the band restricts the amount of food that can be consumed by the patient, facilitating weight loss.
Is Lap-Band Surgery Right for Me?
Lap-band surgery is suitable for patients who want to permanently lose a significant amount of weight. After surgery patients should expect to lose between 0.5-1 kilogram a week for the first 12-18 months.
Advantages of Lap-Band Surgery
Because the procedure used for Lap-band surgery is laparoscopic, it is less invasive than traditional open surgery. This results in:
- Reduced scarring.
- Shorter recovery period.
There are several other advantages of this procedure:
- The band is adjustable, meaning the stomach can be reduced/increased in size as needed.
- It is reversible.
What is involved in the Lap-Band Procedure?
The lap-band procedure involves several steps:
- The surgeon makes small incisions in the patient’s stomach.
- Specialised instruments, including a lighted camera, and the adjustable silicone band are then inserted through these incisions.
- The camera transmits a live feed, enabling the surgeon to carefully secure the band around the upper part of the stomach with sutures.
- An injection port is connected via a tube to the band and then positioned alongside the muscle of the abdominal wall.
- The band can then be tightened or loosened by injecting or draining a saline solution.
Preparing for Lap-Band Surgery
Before the procedure Dr Dolan will run a series of tests to ensure that patients are ready for surgery. Patients will need to follow an eating plan set out by their surgeon and dietitian.
Dr Dolan will go over the specific instructions for preoperative care, but generally patients will need to:
- Go on a liquid diet a week before surgery.
- Avoid eating after midnight, the day before surgery.
- Ask a friend or family member to be at the hospital for support and comfort.
What to Expect After Lap-Band Surgery ?
Following lap-band surgery patients will need to eat a liquid for two week, then a pureed diet for two weeks. Four weeks after surgery, patients should be able to resume eating normal foods.
Patients also need to a commit to healthy lifestyle as part of the recovery and weight loss process. This involves following the plan set out by the surgeon, dietitian and exercise physiologist.
What are the Costs and Funding Options for Lap-Band Surgery?
There are a number of factors which may influence the final cost of surgery. Dr Dolan will be able to provide a more detailed quote after consultation.
Patients can choose from a variety of payment options available depending on their financial circumstances and insurance status:
- For patients with private insurance out of pocket surgery cost is $1,950.
- For patients without private insurance the cost is $17,000 to $19,000.
Medicare rebates are available for this procedure and our surgery offers payment plans for patients.
After you have had had the procedure, you will need to stick to a liquid diet for the first two weeks following surgery. After that, you will be expected to eat a pureed diet for two weeks. After a month following treatment, you will be able to resume eating normal foods, but it is very important that you commit to a balanced, healthy eating plan as recommended by your dietician.