Lap-Band® Surgery (Gastric Banding)


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Fletcher Allen Bariatric Surgery offers a gastric banding, or Lap-Band® surgery, as a weight loss surgery option for patients looking to dramatically reduce their weight. You’ve probably made several attempts to take control of your weight through diet and exercise.  But for many, that is not enough.

Weight loss surgery, also known as bariatric surgery, has been shown to provide the longest period of sustained weight loss in patients who have tried other approaches without success. One of the bariatric surgery options offered by Fletcher Allen is called Lap-Band® surgery.

Why choose Fletcher Allen Bariatric Surgery?

Fletcher Allen Bariatric Surgeons and the Bariatric Surgery progam have been accredited as a Level 1 Bariatric Surgery Center by the American College of Surgeons (ACS). The ACS BSCN Accreditation Program accredits facilities in the United States that have undergone an independent, voluntary, and rigorous peer evaluation in accordance with nationally recognized bariatric surgical standards. In addition the accreditation symbolizes institutional commitment and accountability for safe, high-quality surgical care, as evidenced by the documentation of performance indictors and the measurement of outcomes. Find a bariatric surgeon here in Vermont.

Considering lap band surgery? Request more information about the Bariatric Program at Fletcher Allen, or call 802-847-3330.

What is Lap-Band® Surgery?

Lap-Band® or gastric band surgeryn involves a silicone ring placed around the upper part of the stomach.  The balloon inside the ring is then inflated to create a small pouch (approximately 20cc or 4 teaspoons). The balloon can be inflated to restrict the amount of food entering the stomach or deflated to correct for over-restriction.  This makes you feel fuller sooner (early satiety) when eating regular high quality food.  The band can be adjusted by injecting saline (salt water) into a port that is placed in the abdomen just under the skin to increase or decrease the restriction.  The port is not visible but can be felt by firm pressure with the fingers. 

Results: you can expect to lose 50-60% of excess body weight within three years. 

Types of Bariatric Surgery

Bariatric surgeons at Fletcher Allen may offer candidates two options, open bariatric surgery and laproscopic bariatric surgery. Open bariatric surgery is a more traditional weight loss surgery that involves making an abdominal incision. Laporoscopic bariatric surgery is a less invasive approach where instruments, inserted through small incisions in the abdomen, are guided by the surgeon using camera at the end of the instrument to perform the surgery from a television monitor. Some patients, including those who have had previous abdominal surgery, are extremely obese or have medical problems may require the open bariatric surgery approach.

Frequently Asked Questions About Gastric Lap Band Surgery

What are some of Lap-Band® surgery results?

Restricts Eating: During adjustable Lap-Band® surgery, a silicone ring is place around the stomach, and the balloon around the ring is inflated, giving the feeling of feeling fuller sooner..

Decreases Calorie Intake: As long as you eat regular high quality food, this system will decrease the calories eaten at a meal. If you drink high caloric beverages like milkshakes or regular soda then you can eat enough calories to prevent weight loss. If you eat calorie dense food like chips and candy then you will prevent weight loss and can even continue to gain weight.

How much weight will I lose after Lap-Band® surgery?

With good follow-up, patients can expect to lose 50-60% of their excess body weight within three years with an average weekly weight loss of 1-2 pounds.  Patients will typically return to clinic for follow-up care and band adjustments 5-8 times a year the first year after surgery and then 2-4 times a year thereafter. For example, if you weighed 210 pounds above your ideal body weight, you could lose 105 pounds.

What are the health benefits of Lap-Band® surgery?

Most invidiuals experience additional health benefits from Lap-Band® surgery. In 95% of patients the quality of life improved and obesity-related health conditions called "comorbidities" were resolved or improved. In addition mobility and energy are usually greatly improved.

Bariatric surgery has also been shown to resolve or improve obesity-related health conditions (comorbidities), including:

  • Type 2 Diabetes – 82%-98% resolved
  • Gout - 72% resolved
  • Migraines – 57% resolved
  • Hypertension – 62%-70% resolved
  • Osteoarthritis/Degenerative joint disease – 44% resolved

Read more about the resolution of comorbidities after bariatric surgery.

How long is the hospital stay for bariatric surgery?

After Lap-Band® surgery, there is a minimal overnight stay at Fletcher Allen Health Care.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of lap band surgery?


  • Although the band is intended to remain in place for life, this procedure is reversible.
  • Eliminates the more serious complication of anastomotic leak.
  • The stomach and intestines remains intact.
  • Early return to work without weight lift restrictions


  • No “dumping syndrome” to reinforce healthier food choices
  • Can drink high calorie foods easily
  • Can require multiple visits yearly for band adjustments
  • Exposure to x-ray – some band adjustments will be done with fluoroscopic guidance.

What are the risks after Lap-Band® surgery?

Your surgeon and the Bariatric Surgery team can help you understand the advantages and risks associated with Lap-Band® surgery.  It is important to remember that weight loss surgery will only work as well as the amount you invest in adopting a healthy and active lifestyle. 

Contact Fletcher Allen Bariatrics about Lap-Band® Surgery

The Bariatric Surgery Team at Fletcher Allen will help you determine whether you are a candidate for surgery. Find out if you are a candidate for Lap-Band® weight loss surgery or request more information about the program. You will receive a Bariatric Surgery Health Questionnaire, Informational Brochure and Patient Booklet. Once we receive the questionnaire from you, our staff will review it and will invite you to attend an introductory session held at our clinic.

Considering Lap-Band® surgery? Request more information about the Bariatric Program at Fletcher Allen, or call 802-847-3330.