Lap Band vs Gastric Sleeve – Which is Best for Sustainable Weight Loss?

The Short Answer:

Lap band surgery is considered safer and less invasive. While Gastric Sleeve surgery requires removing a portion of your stomach, lap band surgery decreases the size of the stomach due to an adjustable band being placed around the upper section of the stomach restricting the size of the stomach and decreasing overall appetite.

For those of us who are struggling to lose weight, despite many determined efforts, surgical weight loss is a viable option. For the most part, there are two major players to consider, Lap Band Vs Gastric Sleeve. In the following article, we are going to take a closer look at both methods and outline the pros and cons of each.

Why Surgical Weight Loss?

We know that managing one’s weight can be a complex issue. On the one hand, modern society has put a high price on personal appearance and an active lifestyle, on the other hand, modern society plays a large role in facilitating the obesity epidemic confronting most western nations, thanks to the pressures of modern living including less time to prepare nutritious meals and exercise.

According to studies by Harvard Medical School, your weight is largely affected by both calorie intake and genetic factors. While this may not come as any great surprise, it’s the percentage that can be attributed to each that is the real question. And the fact is, if you’ve suffered from uncontrollable and unmanageable weight gain your entire life, then genetics have more of an influence than you might think.

It must be said there are literally thousands of weight loss products on the market. In most cases, though, these products are an inadequate solution because they fail to prevent you from regaining the weight or don’t take into account your general health and well-being. Instead giving their customers what they want (e.g. short term weight loss solutions) as opposed to what they actually need to change their lifestyle and essentially be fit for life. There are some weight loss solutions that are more holistic by nature but the majority of products most simply don’t work over the long term.

Obviously, surgical procedures such as lap band or gastric sleeve surgery are considered a more drastic option, but nonetheless an option that is gaining traction with those who are struggling to lose weight. According to NPR, more than 150,000 Americans are opting for these solutions each year. Both Lap Band and Gastric Sleeve procedures are serious operations. To help you decide on what is best for you, below is an overview of both options so you can make a healthy and informed decision.

Lap-band Surgery Overview

lap band vs gastric sleeveLap band, also known as gastric binding, is one of the most popular ways to combat severe obesity. Lap band surgery is an in-patient and invasive procedure where your medical doctor places an adjustable belt around the upper portion of the stomach. The band is designed to be adjustable, which is why it is made out of silicone. To fill up the band, saline is added. Once the band is full, it is wrapped conveniently around the stomach to create a smaller pouch. The band itself is connected to a very small tube that goes through the abdomen and a port. To fill up the saline bag, all you need to do is utilize the port.

The band is constructed from Silicon and is designed to be adjustable. To fill up the band, saline is added. Once the band is full, it is wrapped conveniently around the stomach to create a smaller pouch. The band itself is connected to a very small tube that goes through the abdomen and a port. To fill up the saline bag, all you need to do is utilize the port. By restricting the size of the stomach, your appetite is decreased. The decrease in appetite allows you to enjoy meals, but it also prevents you from overindulging and consuming more calories than you need. Over time, as you utilize the lap band to control your appetite, the brain will begin to regulate itself toward the new hunger patterns. This allows you to rely less and less on the gastric band to control your appetite.

By restricting the size of the stomach, your appetite is decreased. The decrease in appetite allows you to enjoy meals, but it also prevents you from overindulging and consuming more calories than you need. Over time, as you utilize the lap band to control your appetite, the brain will begin to regulate itself toward the new hunger patterns. This allows you to rely less and less on the gastric band to control your appetite.Lap Band Candidates

Lap Band Candidates

There are certain medical conditions that you must meet if you are to use a Lap Band. You are considered a candidate for the procedure if you:

  • Have a BMI (Body Mass Index) of at least 40
  • Serious weight loss attempts have already failed
  • You are not suffering from any disease
  • You are not currently pregnant
  • You do not drink in excess

Benefits and Disadvantages of Lap band

Every weight loss option has risks and benefits. According to medical sources, Lap Band is an optimal option because it is one of the least invasive medical weight reduction surgeries available. There is minimal scarring, and a hospital stay is not required. In addition, long-term studies have shown that individuals who have used Lap-Band for weight loss have followed up with the weight loss for over 15 years.

In terms of disadvantages, it is not simply a case of set and forget. While the lap band will in the majority of cases help with weight loss, it is ultimately up to the individual to adopt a more active lifestyle.


Gastric Sleeve Overview

An alternative to Lap Band surgery is Gastric Sleeve Surgery. This type of surgery is different to the Lap Band in that instead of using an inflatable band to close off a portion of the stomach, gastric sleeve removes a portion of the stomach leaving it in a tube shape. According to the Health Library by John Hopkins Medicine, the small pouch is then attached to the small intestine, therefore bypassing the rest of the small stomach. As a result, your body absorbs fewer calories and fat from your meals. Over time, you consume less food and your body sustains itself on the smaller meals that you consume.

The small pouch is then attached to the small intestine, therefore bypassing the rest of the stomach. As a result, your body absorbs fewer calories and fat from your meals. Over time, you consume less food and your body sustains itself on the smaller meals that you consume.Gastric Sleeve Candidates

Gastric Sleeve Candidates

As per Lap Band surgery, Gastric Sleeve Surgery is also very selective. For your own health and for that of a successful surgery, you must meet a number of criteria including:

  • You must be between 80 and 100 pounds overweight
  • Your BMI needs to be greater than 40 (as per Lap Band)
  • You have a history of weight fluctuation
  • You also must not have any serious health issues.

Benefits and Disadvantages of Gastric Sleeve Surgery

Similar to Lap Band surgery, Gastric Sleeve Surgery also has its benefits and disadvantages. Reports have clearly demonstrated that this type of surgery can reduce your weight by 40-50 percent, healing time is two weeks, it has the lowest rate of post-operative risks, and it still allows you to retain your vitamin and mineral intake.

The disadvantages of this surgery option are that this procedure’s weight loss takes longer than other approaches, there is strict adherence to a post-operative diet, and overeating can cause complications.


Lap Band Vs Gastric Sleeve Surgery, The Verdict.

Both of these two surgeries are viable options if you are suffering from obesity. However, when it comes down to making a final call between Lap Band and Gastric Sleeve surgery, Lap-Band is a safer and less invasive option. As opposed to Gastric sleeve surgery, the Lap-Band does not require removing a portion of your stomach and it also does not require rerouting of the stomach to the lower intestine. This greatly reduces the risk that surgery can cause.

As opposed to Gastric sleeve surgery, the Lap-Band does not require removing a portion of your stomach and it also does not require rerouting of the stomach to the lower intestine. This greatly reduces the risk that surgery can cause.

Furthermore, according to many who have tried Lap Band surgery, it is effective in reducing weight. Patients see weight loss almost immediately while gastric sleeve surgery takes more time. Furthermore, with the Lap Band, you also do not need to restrict your diet as much as you would have to with gastric sleeve surgery. This makes the entire weight loss process much easier and more convenient.


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