Gastric Bypass Versus Lap Band Essay

1269 words - 6 pages

While both Gastric-Bypass and the Lap-Band procedure have similarities, there are differences in the amount of discomfort, effort, and amount and time of weight loss. There are many important decisions to be made when choosing which procedure would best fit the needs, lifestyle, and health of an individual. Comparing these side-by-side should help in making an informed decision.
Here is a brief description of each procedure. Gastric-Bypass is a surgical bypass operation performed to restrict food intake and reduce absorption of calories and nutrients in the treatment of severe obesity that typically involves reducing the size of the stomach and reconnecting the smaller stomach ...view middle of the document...

(4) The LAP-BAND is easily reversible since it does not involve cutting or rearranging your intestines in any way. The gastric bypass is irreversible. Some surgeons write about reversing the gastric bypass, but this is a major operation with much higher risks than even a gastric bypass. Patients should think of a gastric bypass as permanent. (5) Comparing the risks and possible complications of each, it seems that the only difference is the ability to tolerate a foreign object implanted in the body and the ability to reverse it.
There are different amounts of discomfort associated with each procedure. With Gastric By-Pass, “Patients experience postoperative pain and such other common discomforts of major surgery, as the NG tube and a dry mouth.” (6) With the Lap-Band procedure, “Most patients experience mild to moderate pain. A common analogy used by patients post-op is that it "feels as if they did 200 hundred sit-ups in a row and their abdominal muscles are sore". “(7) It sounds as if with both procedures there is pain and discomfort associated.
Both procedures require the effort to lose the weight before and after surgery. Prior to surgery, each patient is placed on a strict diet that they must follow. The patient in the weeks just before surgery will be on a liquid only diet. The procedure only works well when coupled with an intense effort on the part of the patients to adapt their eating habits toward infrequent small volume meals in concert with the surgical changes–the Gastric Bypass is best viewed as a "tool" to assist in reduction of calorie intake, and cannot serve as a substitute for the patient’s mental effort in dieting. (8) With the Lap-Band procedure, incorporating regular physical activity into your daily routine is as important as your nutrition plan. (9) Most weight loss surgery patients will be discharged from the hospital on a liquid-only meal plan for two to three weeks. After three weeks the diet is usually advanced to soft foods for the next six to eight weeks with a gradual transition to regular consistency foods over the next six to nine months. (10) The procedures are very similar concerning the effort to lose the weight with surgery. Eating habits and diet will have to be changed to help lose weight with both procedures. As with any weight loss attempt, physical activity is very important for success.
The length of time for weight loss is different for both procedures. With Gastric Bypass, “On an average, patients will lose 120 pounds or about 70% of their excess weight in one year. Some people lose a little more, some a little less. Weight loss will continue during the second year at a less rapid rate.” (11) The average weight loss in the Lap-Band U.S. clinical trials was approximately 40% of excess weight, but some patients were able to lose much more. (12) It seems that with the Gastric Bypass, more weight is lost in the first year. The University of California, Irvine...

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