My Gastric Band Isn’t Working: What Now?

My Gastric Band Isn’t Working: What Now?

So, you decided to get the gastric band, but you’re noticing less than stellar results. Don’t panic; many people choose to get this procedure and opt for gastric band removal after not seeing the outcome they’d hoped for.

We at Bergen Bariatric and Surgical Solutions P.C., understand patients sometimes choose a procedure, then look for different or better results down the road. That’s why Dr. Mikhail A. Botvinov performs gastric band removal and gastric sleeve surgery.  

Why your gastric band isn’t working

First of all, it’s not uncommon to see disappointing results from the gastric band. Many people are disappointed to learn that the rapid weight loss and easily maintained thinness they expected aren’t always a package deal with this procedure. This is true for several reasons. 

For one, the gastric band (unlike many of the bariatric procedures of today) doesn’t affect hormones or metabolism. It simply keeps you from being able to eat larger amounts of food. This doesn’t help everyone and can even cause certain complications for some, such as the development of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), heartburn, and trouble swallowing. 

In some cases, the portion of the stomach above the band may start to stretch, allowing your body to take in more food. Beyond eventual weight gain, this comes with its own set of complications. Sometimes the band can slip from its location or even erode into the stomach and need to be removed ASAP. 

Finally, some patients simply don’t realize how much upkeep the band requires, including appointments for readjustments, following a strict diet, and more. With all of these complications, it’s common to realize the procedure hasn’t worked as you hoped.

The rise and fall of the gastric band

The adjustable gastric band used to be all the rage in bariatric surgery. It was introduced in 1993, and by 2008, 44% of bariatric procedures were gastric band placements. However, the procedure has fallen out of favor in recent years, causing it to shrink to only 1% of bariatric surgeries performed in 2014. 

Studies suggest 50% to 80% of gastric bands that were placed in the procedure’s heyday will likely need to be removed. It may be time to consider gastric band removal depending on your situation. 

What getting your gastric band removed means 

Getting a gastric band removal means you will reverse the effects of the procedure. It doesn’t take long, and it will allow your stomach to return to its former shape. Dr. Botvinov works to remove all evidence of the surgery so you can make any choice you like going forward. 

Many patients choose to care for their health with behavior modifications, such as exercise and eating smaller portions of healthier foods. However, many of our patients have found the gastric sleeve to be a great alternative, a procedure that can sometimes be performed simultaneously with your gastric band removal. 

Don’t live with what doesn’t work; get the gastric band removed

If you’ve noticed your gastric band has stopped working, has never worked properly, or has caused health concerns, removing it’s a quick and easy procedure. Afterward, you can start looking toward your future. 

Call today or book an appointment on our website to have a consultation.

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