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Lap-Band Surgery


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Compare the Lap Band procedure versus Gastric Bypass Surgery






Gastric Bypass

Compare the Lap Band procedure to Gastric Bypass Surgery   Compare Gastric Bypass Surgery to the Lap Band Procedure


A restrictive procedure, during which an inflatable band is placed around the upper part of the stomach. This creates a smaller stomach pouch, which restricts the amount of food that can be consumed at one time and increases the time it takes for the stomach to empty. As a result, a patient achieves sustained weight loss by limiting food intake, reducing appetite, and slowing digestion.   A combination procedure that uses both restrictive and malabsorptive elements. First the stomach is stapled to make a smaller pouch. Then most of the stomach and part of the intestines are bypassed by attaching (usually stapling) a part of the intestine to the small stomach pouch. As a result, a patient cannot eat as much and absorbs fewer nutrients and calories.


  • Lowest mortality rate
  • Least invasive surgical approach
  • No stomach stapling or cutting, or intestinal re-routing
  • Adjustable
  • Reversible
  • Lowest operative complication rate
  • Low malnutrition risk
  • Rapid initial weight loss
  • Minimally invasive approach is common
  • Longer clinical experience in the U.S.
  • Slightly higher total average weight loss reported than with purely restrictive procedures


  • Slower initial weight loss
  • Regular follow-up critical for optimal results
  • Requires an implanted medical device
  • In some cases, effectiveness can be reduced due to band slippage
  • In some cases, the access port may leak and require minor revisional surgery
  • Cutting and stapling of stomach and bowel are required
  • More operative complications
  • Portion of digestive tract is bypassed, reducing absorption of essential nutrients
  • Medical complications due to nutritional deficiencies
  • "Dumping syndrome2" can occur
  • Non-adjustable
  • Extremely difficult to reverse
  • Higher mortality rate


Although during the first year after surgery, weight loss with the gastric bypass is greater than with the LAP-BANDŽ System, surgeons report that at 5 years many LAP-BANDŽ and gastric bypass patients achieve comparable weight loss (55% for LAP-BANDŽ and 59% for Gastric Bypass).



Mortality rate: 0.05%
Total complications: 9%
Major complications: 0.2%
Most common include:
  • Standard risks associated with major surgery
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Band slippage (minor revisional surgery)
  • Band erosion (minor revisional surgery)
  • Access port problems (minor revisional surgery)
  Mortality rate: 0.5-2%
Total complications: 23%
Major complications: 2.1%
Most common include:
  • Standard risks associated with major surgery
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Separation of stapled areas (major revisional surgery)
  • Leaks from staple lines (major revisional surgery)
  • Nutritional deficiencies

Costs and Insurance

Generally speaking, both procedures will be covered by insurance, but check with your employer or your surgeons office for specific information about your policy. Costs of LAP-BANDŽ surgery and Gastric Bypass surgery will vary depending upon the site where the surgery occurs (in-patient or out-patient), the type of bypass procedure (laparoscopic or open) and how long you are required to stay in the hospital. One survey of cash prices for both procedures showed the average charge for a LAP-BANDŽ procedure of $17,500 while the average charge for a laparoscopic gastric bypass was $22,500. The survey did not find any program that offered a cash price for open gastric bypass.


Recovery Timeline

  • Hospital stay is usually less than 24 hours
  • Most patients return to normal activity within 1 week
  • Full surgical recovery usually occurs within about 2 weeks
  With a laparoscopic approach:
  • Hospital stay is usually 48-72 hours
  • Many patients return to normal activity within 2.5 weeks
  • Full surgical recovery usually occurs within about 3 weeks




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Home  l  Lap-Band Surgery  l  Lap Band information  l  Lap Band costs  l  Lap Band Insurance coverage  l  The Lap Band diet

Lap Band candidates  l  Lap Band surgery risks  l  Lap Band Surgery advantages  l  About the Lap Band Procedure

What to expect from the surgery  l  After Lap Band surgery  l  Compare lap band to gastric bypass  l  StomaphyX

Adjustable Gastric Banding  l  Gastric Bypass Surgery  l  Realize Gastric Banding  l  Vertical Gastric Sleeve  l  Duodenal Switch

Types of weight loss surgery  l  Surgery Comparison Chart  l  Weight loss surgery myths  l  Choosing a bariatric surgeon

Types of weight loss surgeries  l  Bariatric surgery centers  l  Facts about obesity  l  Obesity and fertility  l  About morbid obesity

Obesity treatment options  l  Obesity surgery  l  Weight loss options  l  Contact Us

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