LAP BAND Surgery -The following is provided to you by WorldMed Assist, Medical Tourism experts, and contains general information that may not apply to you. You should consult with your physician about your specific situation. WorldMed Assist provides access to Lap Band Surgery in Mexico and India.

What is Lap Band Surgery?

The LAP BAND System is an alternative to gastric bypass surgery involving an adjustable gastric band designed to help you lose excess body weight, improve weight-related health conditions and enhance quality of life. It reduces the stomach capacity and restricts the amount of food that can be consumed at one time. The LAP-BAND® System procedure does not require stomach cutting and stapling or gastrointestinal re-routing to bypass normal digestion. The LAP BAND System is the only adjustable and reversible weight-loss surgery available in the United States and the only weight-loss surgery approved for use by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

The name “LAP-BAND” comes from the surgical technique used, laparoscopic, and the name of the implanted medical device, gastric band. The LAP BAND System is a silicone ring designed to be placed around the upper part of the stomach and filled with saline on its inner surface. This creates a new, smaller stomach pouch that can hold only a small amount of food, so the food storage area in the stomach is reduced. The band also controls the stoma (stomach outlet) between the new upper pouch and the lower part of the stomach. When the stomach is smaller, you feel full faster, while the food moves more slowly between your upper and lower stomach as it is digested. As a result, you eat less and lose weight.

The Minimally Invasive Procedure
During the procedure, surgeons usually use laparoscopic techniques (making tiny incisions rather than a large incision and inserting long-shafted instruments through “ports”), to wrap the LAP-BAND® System around the patient’s stomach. A narrow camera is passed through a port so the surgeon can view the operative site on a nearby video monitor. Like a wristwatch, the band is fastened around the upper stomach to create the new stomach pouch that limits and controls the amount of food you eat. The band is then locked securely in a ring around the stomach.

Since there is no stomach cutting, stapling, or gastrointestinal re-routing involved in the LAP-BAND® System procedure, it is considered the safest, least invasive, and least traumatic of all weight-loss surgeries. The laparoscopic approach to the surgery also has the advantages of reduced post-operative pain, shortened hospital stay, and quicker recovery. If for any reason the LAP-BAND® System needs to be removed, the stomach generally returns to its original form.

Adjustable Weight Loss
Once placed around the stomach, tubing connects the LAP BAND to an access port fixed beneath the skin of your abdomen. This allows the surgeon to change the stoma (stomach outlet) size by adding or subtracting saline, or salt water, inside the inner balloon through the access port. This adjustment process helps determine the rate of weight loss. If the band is too loose and weight loss is inadequate, adding more saline can reduce the size of the stoma to further restrict the amount of food that can move through it. If the band is too tight, the surgeon will remove some saline to loosen the band and reduce the amount of restriction.

The diameter of the band can be modified to meet your individual needs, which can change as you lose weight. For example, pregnant patients can expand their band to accommodate a growing fetus, while patients who aren’t experiencing significant weight loss can have their bands tightened.

The LAP BAND System is also the only adjustable weight-loss surgery available in the United States to help maintain restriction and keep the weight off long-term.

The LAP BAND System Advantages at a Glance

Minimal Trauma

  • Least invasive surgical option
  • No intestinal re-routing
  • No cutting or stapling of the stomach wall or bowel
  • Small incisions and minimal scarring
  • Reduced patient pain, length of hospital stay and recovery period

Fewer Risks and Side Effects

  • 10 times less operative and short-term mortality than gastric bypass1
  • Low risk of nutritional deficiencies associated with gastric bypass
  • Reduced risk of hair loss
  • No “dumping syndrome” related to dietary intake restrictions


  • Allows individualized degree of restriction for ideal rate of weight-loss
  • Adjustments performed without additional surgery
  • Supports pregnancy by allowing stomach outlet size to be opened to accommodate increased nutritional needs
  • Only surgical option designed to help maintain long-term weight loss


  • Removable at any time
  • Stomach and other anatomy are generally restored to their original forms and functions

Effective Long-Term Weight Loss

  • More than 300,000 LAP BAND System devices placed worldwide
  • Standard of care for hundreds of surgeons around the world
  • #1 selling adjustable gastric band for weight loss
  • Academic publications with up to 10 years of follow-up

Lap Band Surgery Recovery

One of the benefits of the LAP-BAND® System is that patients return to normal activity relatively quickly after surgery. The length of hospital stay is usually less than 24 hours. It also takes most people about a week to return to work and a month to six weeks to resume strenuous exercising. In the case of open surgery or if there are complications, recovery may take longer.

LAP-BAND® System surgery is the first step on the road to successful and sustained weight loss. However, you must take the next step by adopting a lifelong program that will help you meet your goals. This multifaceted program will include routine check-ups with your surgeon, ongoing band adjustments if necessary, and regular attendance at support group meetings. You will need to work closely with your surgeon and weight-management team, follow their advice, and communicate openly with them. You will also need to learn to use the LAP-BAND® System as a tool to help you lose your excess weight.

Post-Surgery Nutrition
After surgery, you will need a new nutrition plan. Your surgeon and/or dietitian can help you learn about and get used to the changes in lifestyle and eating habits you need to make. It is very important to follow the eating and drinking instructions beginning immediately after the operation.In the first few weeks after your surgery, you will be on a liquid diet since only thin liquids will be tolerated by your stomach at that time. As you heal, you will gradually progress to pureed foods (three to four weeks post-op) and then soft foods (five weeks post-op). Finally, you will be able to eat solid foods.

When you can eat solid foods without problems you will need to pay close attention to your diet. The LAP-BAND® System is designed to restrict solids, not liquids, so drinking liquids will not make you feel full. You also should not drink liquids during or immediately after meals as they will flush food through the reduced stomach pouch, which means you will not get the prolonged feeling of satiety needed to help you eat less. However, staying hydrated and drinking lots of water throughout the day is important. You will also need to learn to eat slowly and chew your food very thoroughly.

It is recommended that you eat only three small meals a day and make sure that these meals contain adequate nutrients. You will need to make good food choices and learn to avoid problem foods, such as high-fiber, high-fat, and dry foods, since these are more difficult for the small stomach pouch to digest. Good food choices include fruit and vegetables, lean protein, some bread and cereal, and some dairy products. Foods that have a concentrated supply of calories with little nutritional value, such as milkshakes, syrups, jam, and pastries, should be avoided as much as possible.

Exercise Plan
Incorporating regular physical activity into your daily routine is as important as following your nutrition plan. Often patients have been sedentary due to decreased activity tolerance, psychological constraints, and in some cases, physical disabilities. After LAP-BAND® surgery, aerobic activities—particularly walking and swimming—are generally best tolerated. You will need to consult with your surgeon and weight-management team to find out which activity is right for you.

Being able to adjust the band is a unique feature of the LAP BAND System and is a normal part of the post-surgery follow-up. This feature allows your surgeon to the right level of restriction to meet your individual needs.

Adjustments are simple office visits that only take 10 or 15 minutes. They are performed without surgery using a thin needle to inject or withdraw saline from the band via the access port. This widens or narrows the band opening to control the rate of your weight loss. The most common reasons for adjustments are that you are not able to eat much of anything without feeling uncomfortable and vomiting (your band is too tight) or that you are not losing weight (your band is too loose). The first adjustment is typically done 4 to 6 weeks after surgery, and the total number of adjustments you may have will depend on your individual weight-loss rate and results.

WorldMed Assist has an extensive network of clinics in the US that can do your adjustments at a very reasonable cost.

Your Motivation: Key to Success
To work, the LAP BAND System needs your active participation. Your success will depend on you and the partnership between you and your medical team. Your surgeon will not perform the operation unless he or she is sure that you understand the problems your excess weight is causing. Your surgeon will also make sure you understand your responsibilities, including adopting and maintaining new eating patterns and a healthy lifestyle.

Related links:

Gastric Bypass Surgery Abroad

Lap Band Surgery Abroad

Duodenal Switch Surgery Abroad

Weight Loss Surgery Abroad

About WorldMed Assist

Experts in medical tourism, WorldMed Assists mission is to improve lives by helping patients receive high quality medical treatment abroad at affordable prices. WorldMed Assist coordinates and simplifies every aspect of care and travel. WorldMed Assist also provides medical tourism as an option for self-insured businesses seeking expanded and affordable healthcare options for employees. Surgery in Belgium, Mexico, India, Turkey and other carefully selected destinations matched with the clients needs is significantly less expensive than in the U.S., yet delivered with the same or higher quality care and results as set by U.S. standards. Waiting times are virtually eliminated, track records are proven, and facilities are state-of-the-art. For more information, go to