Lap-Band Health: What to Expect after Your Surgery
Los Angeles, California
The Lap-Band procedure is a popular choice for weight loss surgery in the Los Angeles area because it offers more flexibility than other options. It is a non-invasive out-patient surgery that does not include cutting or stapling.
The Lap-Band is a silicone band that is placed over the upper part of the stomach to restrict stomach size, making the patient fill fuller after eating less food. The Lap-Band procedure is adjustable according to patients' needs, so they can control how much weight they lose. Unlike gastric bypass, the Lap-Band does not cause malabsorption, meaning it does not restrict the amount of nutrients a patient can absorb.
It also offers a quicker recovery time. Most Lap-Band patients are able to return to work within a week after surgery and are fully recovered within five to six weeks. In a sense, though, recovery from the surgery is only the first step in a life-changing, lifelong process of healthier living.
In order to get the full results of the surgery, patients must follow up with a series of important post-operative steps. The surgery alone isn't enough to maintain weight loss goals that last a lifetime.
Lap-Band post-operative steps include:
- Developing a support network. Dr. Carson Liu™'s Santa Monica bariatric surgery office offers Lap-Band patients a post-operative care program called My Lap-Band Journey. The program offers online tracking of patient progress and a place to share stories. It also offers counseling, individualized information and nutritional help. Dr. Liu also runs a bariatric surgery support group at his Santa Monica clinic one Saturday a month.
- Following a prescribed nutrition plan. The plan will generally include a liquid diet for two weeks, followed by a gradual return to solid food. In the Los Angeles area, Dr. Carson Liu offers the Conscious Eating Bariatric Program to pre and post-operative patients. This program includes the chance for patients to participate in group therapy. The Conscious Eating Bariatric Program is used through the United States and has proven results.
- Making frequent return visits to their surgeon for Lap-Band adjustments. These adjustments or "fills" are done in the office and generally take less then 15 minutes. Remember, the volume of saline injected and frequency of adjustments varies from person to person and should be tight enough to let you gradually lose weight. The amount of fluid injected at your visit will depend on your type of band, the amount of fluid already in your band, your appetite, huger level and snacking habits, the date of your last adjustment, as well as any symptoms of reflux or vomiting. There is no set number of adjustments or "ideal" fill volume."
- Following a prescribed exercise program
Every patient is an individual, and so every recovery process is different. It is important for patients to contact a qualified bariatric surgeon to answer all their questions. Please call or e-mail Dr. Carson Liu™'s Los Angeles bariatric surgery office to schedule a consultation.