LAP-Band Surgery

You already know that obesity is a serious medical condition that leads to heart disease, diabetes, and other life-threatening conditions. You know that you need to do something about your weight if you want to be there for your children and grandchildren in the future. You have probably tried plenty of times to lose weight, but for some people, diet and exercise alone are not enough to lose pounds and keep them off.

doctor wearing orange scrubsIt’s time to look for a real, permanent weight loss solution. If you are seriously considering weight loss surgery and are already researching the various bariatric surgery procedures, you’ve already taken a step in the right direction. LAP-BAND® weight loss surgery has already helped thousands of people finally take control of their weight, and you could be the next bariatric surgery success story.

LAP-BAND® — The Least Invasive Option for Weight Loss Surgery

All of the bariatric procedures performed by our board-certified LA bariatric surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya can help you triumph over obesity with hard work and dedication. Compared to other bariatric surgery procedures like gastric bypass surgery, however, LAP-BAND® surgery is the least invasive option.

The LAP-BAND® system is an adjustable, removable gastric band that cinches around your stomach, creating a small pouch at the top. With the LAP-BAND® device in place, the pouch fills up quickly after eating just a small amount of food, making you feel satisfied. After your operation, your LAP-BAND® surgeon Dr. Dahiya can adjust the amount of saline in the gastric band without additional surgery, making it tighter or looser as needed. The LAP-BAND® system can even be adjusted to allow for a healthy pregnancy, and unlike gastric bypass surgery, the LAP-BAND® procedure is fully reversible.

LAP-BAND® surgery does not involve re-routing your digestive tract, which makes LAP-BAND® less painful than other bariatric procedures and allows for a faster recovery. Dr. Dahiya performs LAP-BAND® surgery through just a single, small incision using the state-of-the-art SPIDER® Surgical System, which also speeds up your recovery and reduces the risk of infection and other complications.

Schedule a consultation at our office in Lakewood if you have more questions about LAP-BAND® surgery or are interested in alternatives to LAP-BAND® surgery like the REALIZE® Band.

Take Charge of Your Health with LAP-BAND® Surgery

More than 100,000 people have already made LAP-BAND® surgery a part of their weight loss journey. You can be the next one to take that step, but only if you are fully committed to making the necessary changes in your lifestyle. LAP-BAND® surgery can help you reduce the number of calories you consume, but it’s up to you to stick with your post-operative weight loss program.

Don’t worry. We will be here for you every step of the way, giving you one-on-one attention and personalized care. Our team of weight loss professionals will help you create and follow a post-surgery diet and exercise plan, and your LAP-BAND® surgeon Dr. Dahiya will help reinforce this plan in your monthly follow-up visits for at least a year after your surgery.

If you are thinking about LAP-BAND® surgery in the Los Angeles area, please contact our board-certified LAP-BAND® surgeon Dr. Dahiya to schedule a consultation at our Lakewood, California office near Orange County.

The Adjustable Gastric Band

A laparoscopic adjustable gastric band – commonly termed a “lap band” – is an inflatable device made of silicone that is placed around the top part of a patient’s stomach during LAP-BAND® surgery. Adjustable gastric bands are made from completely biocompatible material, allowing them to stay in your body without causing any harm.

Two types of adjustable gastric bands have been approved by the FDA for use in the United States: the LAP-BAND® System and the REALIZE® Band. These two surgeries are the least invasive bariatric procedures of their kind, usually resulting in a faster recovery process, shorter hospital stay, less pain, and smaller scars than other open surgery procedures. Since no part of a patient’s stomach is stapled, removed, or re-routed, the body can continue to normally absorb nutrients from food.

How the Adjustable Gastric Band Works

LAP Band diagramThe placement of the adjustable gastric band is designed to create a division in the stomach, resulting in a small pouch at the top of your stomach that can only hold around ½ cup of food at one time. (A typical stomach holds around 6 cups of food at once.)

Adjustable gastric bands can hold from 4 to 12 cc of saline solution; when the band is inflated with this solution, pressure is placed around the outside of the stomach, decreasing the size of the passage between the small upper pouch and the lower stomach. This restricts the movement of food.

Over the course of your treatment, Dr. Dahiya will adjust the gastric band until the ideal restriction has been achieved: not so tight that food can’t be properly digested, but not so loose that your hunger is not controlled. The band is adjusted by filling it with the saline solution through a small access port just under your skin. For most patients, this process only takes a few short minutes.

Diet is Key to the Gastric Band’s Success

It’s important to remember that the adjustable gastric band is a tool to assist you with weight loss, not a cure by itself. You must follow a specific dietary plan outlined by Dr. Dahiya in order to meet your weight loss goals. If you continue your previous eating habits after bariatric surgery, you will stretch your stomach and undermine the effectiveness of the surgery.

Gastric banding surgery requires you to be committed to a permanent change in your diet and lifestyle. If you are ready for the challenge, bariatric surgery can be an incredibly valuable experience that puts you on the path towards a healthy future and a renewed life.

If you live in the Los Angeles, Orange County, or Riverside areas of California and are considering LAP-BAND® or REALIZE® Band surgery, please contact experienced bariatric surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya today to schedule a consultation.

How the LAP-BAND® Works

Most people know that LAP-BAND® surgery helps people with obesity eat less and get to a healthy weight, but fewer know howLAP-BAND® weight loss surgery actually works. We want you to be fully informed before deciding whether the LAP-BAND® is your best bariatric surgery option.

When you come in for your LAP-BAND® surgery consultation, our board-certified bariatric surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya will explain everything you need to know about the LAP-BAND®, including alternatives to LAP-BAND® surgery and the risks and complications of weight loss surgery.

How LAP-BAND® Surgery Helps You Eat Less

The LAP-BAND® device cinches around the upper part of your stomach with a soft silicone ring filled with saline. This creates a small pouch at the top of your stomach, which holds only a small amount of food. When you eat, the pouch fills up quickly, sending a signal to your brain that makes you feel full.

The pouch created by the LAP-BAND® device has less than 10% of the volume of your whole stomach, so after LAP-BAND® surgery you feel full faster and longer. Since you are satisfied with such a small portion of food, you are then able to eat less and finally lose the weight you have been trying to lose for years.

One of the best things about LAP-BAND® surgery is that the LAP-BAND® device is adjustable. Your bariatric surgeon Dr. Dahiya can ensure that it remains effective and comfortable for years to come without additional surgery. Dr. Dahiya can make these adjustments by adding or removing saline solution through a port underneath your skin using a specialized needle. The goal of these adjustments is to make sure that your stomach is restricted, but food can still move smoothly through your digestive system.

How LAP-BAND® Surgery Helps You Lose Weight

LAP-BAND® surgery is remarkably effective, but it’s not magical or miraculous. In order to reach your goal weight and stay there, you must be committed to eating a healthy, nutritious diet and regular exercise. Eating smaller portions and feeling full more quickly is extremely helpful for losing a significant amount of weight, but it takes a lifelong commitment to making healthy choices to make that weight loss permanent.

Thankfully, you’re not alone. After your LAP-BAND® surgery, you’ll have monthly check-ins at our office in Lakewood so that your LAP-BAND® surgeon Dr. Dahiya can monitor your progress. Our nutrition specialist Dr. Jose Mari-Elacion will reinforce your post-operative weight loss program of exercise and healthy eating, encouraging you to keep up the good work. After years of feeling powerless against overeating and obesity, LAP-BAND® surgery can put your future back in your own hands.

If you are committed to changing your life for the better with LAP-BAND® surgery in Los Angeles, please contact our board-certified bariatric surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya and come into our office near Orange County in Lakewood, California for a LAP-BAND® consultation.

Questions about LAP-BAND® Surgery

Q: How much does LAP-BAND® surgery cost?

Actually, almost every LAP-BAND® surgery we perform is covered by Medicare or by the patient’s health insurance, so the cost you pay for LAP-BAND® surgery depends on your health insurance policy. Some insurance companies do have extra requirements, however, so come to our office in Lakewood, California and we will do whatever we can to help you get insurance coverage for weight loss surgery. If you do not have health insurance or a very high deductible, you can get financing for weight loss surgery through CareCredit.

Q: How long does LAP-BAND® surgery take?

Maintaining a healthy weight is a lifelong commitment, but the LAP-BAND® surgery itself usually only takes about an hour. At your LAP-BAND® surgery consultation, our Los Angeles LAP-BAND® surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya will explain how LAP-BAND® surgery works and the steps you’ll need to take in the weeks before your LAP-BAND® procedure.

After your LAP-BAND® surgery, you should expect to miss at least a week or two of work as you recover from the operation. Because Dr. Dahiya uses the minimally invasive SPIDER® Surgical System, your recovery after LAP-BAND® surgery may even be faster and less painful than you expect.

Q: How fast will I lose weight after LAP-BAND® surgery?

The speed of your weight loss after LAP-BAND® surgery depends on several characteristics that are unique to your body. In particular, the genetic and physiological influences that contributed to your obesity problem in the first place significantly affect your ability to shed pounds quickly after LAP-BAND® surgery. In general, the better you are at sticking to your post-surgery weight loss program of diet and exercise, the faster you should reach your weight loss goals. Because your LAP-BAND® device is adjustable, Dr. Dahiya can make your LAP-BAND® device more restrictive if you are not losing weight fast enough.

Q: What are the risks of LAP-BAND® surgery?

All major surgery involves some degree of risk, and LAP-BAND® surgery is no exception. However, Dr. Dahiya performs LAP-BAND® surgery using a single incision with the SPIDER® system to significantly reduce these risks. Complications from LAP-BAND® surgery are extremely rare, but can include ulcers, gastritis, infection, bleeding, and problems with the LAP-BAND® device. Gastric banding surgery like the LAP-BAND® and REALIZE® Band do not rearrange your digestive system, which avoids the nutritional difficulties that can sometimes occur with gastric bypass surgery.

If you have more questions about LAP-BAND® surgery, please contact our Los Angeles LAP-BAND® surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya to set up a visit to our Lakewood, California office near Riverside and Orange County.

LAP-BAND® Surgery Side Effects

As with all major surgical procedures, LAP-BAND® surgery does come with the risk of certain complications. After a thorough examination and consultation, Dr. Dahiya will help you determine if you are an ideal candidate for LAP-BAND® surgery, or if there is an alternative weight loss surgery that would be a better option for you.

When Dr. Dahiya performs LAP-BAND® surgery, he makes a single incision using the SPIDER® Surgical System to reduce the risks involved with invasive surgery. Because LAP-BAND® surgery does not require any rearrangement of your digestive system like gastric bypass surgery, complications are usually quite rare, and your body is still able to normally absorb important nutrients.

Below are some of the possible side effects that have been associated with LAP-BAND® surgery.

Nausea and Vomiting

Because of how small your new stomach pouch is after surgery, you will not be able to digest certain foods as well as you once did. Certain raw vegetables and fruits – such as broccoli or apples – will be difficult for your new stomach to handle, along with fatty meats. If you consume these foods too early in your dietary plan, or simply take in more than your body can handle, you may experience nausea.

Your smaller stomach size also means that fluid intake is sometimes neglected, leading to dehydration, which is another cause of nausea and vomiting. These side effects can be avoided by carefully following your post-surgery diet plan and following up with Dr. Dahiya to make sure you are meeting your goals.


Gastritis is an inflammation of the stomach lining that can occur along with indigestion. The symptoms of gastritis include a burning ache or pain in your upper abdomen, feeling full in your upper abdomen, and nausea. Most cases of gastritis are short-lived and won’t require medical attention, but if you experience prolonged symptoms, speak with Dr. Dahiya.

Problems with the LAP-BAND® Gastric Band

On rare occasions, issues can arise with the adjustable gastric band itself. The band could slip out of place, begin to erode, or saline solution could leak out of the band into your body. Leaked saline can contribute to nausea in patients, or simply a general feeling of discomfort and malaise. Dr. Dahiya will monitor the adjustable gastric band through follow-up appointments to ensure it is in the right position and in good working order.

Preventing LAP-BAND® Side Effects

Most of the side effects discussed above can be avoided through careful monitoring of your diet and close follow-up with Dr. Dahiya. Nausea and vomiting can especially be prevented by eating smaller portions, chewing your food slowly, and learning which foods your stomach can tolerate easily. If you are experiencing post-surgery side effects, Dr. Dahiya can help you determine the cause and develop a solution. A significant benefit of LAP-BAND® surgery is that it can easily be reversed if severe side effects start occurring.

If you have further questions or concerns about LAP-BAND® surgery, please contact experienced bariatric surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya today to schedule a consultation.

LAP-BAND® Recovery Process

Following Lap-Band surgery, you may feel sore and your mouth will be extremely dry. Immediately after the surgery you will most likely only be able to take a sip of water or chew on some ice chips to help alleviate the dry mouth you may be experiencing.

What to Expect During Lap-Band Surgery Recovery

Pain medication can help to manage any discomfort that you are experiencing while your body recovers from the surgery. Dr. Dahiya and the medical staff will help to advise you on certain over the counter medications that are safe for you to take. Once you have been checked out and released from the hospital, it will be required for someone to drive you home.

Dr. Dahiya will also provide you with a list of postoperative instructions and provide you with a potential list of complications that may arise.

A diet composed primarily of liquids should be used for a few weeks following the weight loss surgery until softer foods such as purees or shakes can be tolerated by your stomach. After a longer period of time, typically 4-6 weeks, solid foods are gradually re-introduced to the stomach and will be digested normally.

Potential Risks & Complications of Surgery

Once you have arrived back at home or wherever you will be recovering from your surgery, it is important to rest as much as possible. This will help to increase your circulation and may also reduce the risk of developing potential blood clots in your lower extremities.

Any heavy lifting or exercise is not permitted in the initial weeks after the procedure. Dr. Dahiya and his medical staff will advise you when it is safe to resume any exercise routine. Most patients can return to work within a week of the surgery, unless the employment is a physically demanding job in which case it is best to chat with a member of the medical staff before doing so.

After the weight loss surgery procedure, patients must make several follow-up visits with their surgeon to ensure no complications have arisen from the surgery as well to adjust the band. On average, approximately 50 percent of excess weight is lost in the first two years following the procedure. Additional plastic surgery may be necessary depending on the amount of weight lost.

LAP-BAND History

Approved by the FDA a decade ago in 2001, the LAP-BAND® device has helped more than a hundred thousand patients worldwide get a new start at combating obesity with surgery. LAP-BAND® weight loss surgeryworks by restricting the stomach with an adjustable band secured using minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery. Our board-certified LAP-BAND® surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya performs this procedure with a single small incision using the state-of-the-art SPIDER® surgical system at LA’s leading hospitals.

Early Beginnings of Gastric Banding Weight Loss Surgery

Before LAP-BAND® surgery was available, bariatric surgeons had fewer options for helping people with obesity restrict their food intake. Gastric bypass surgery and sleeve gastrectomy were the most common bariatric surgery procedures, but surgeons wanted an option that was reversible and led to fewer side effects.

In the late 1970s and early 1980s, bariatric surgeons in the US, Norway, Sweden, and Australia developed gastric bands, meshes, and clips made from various materials, including Gore-Tex® and the same plastic used to make Hula Hoops®. These early gastric banding surgery attempts were not adjustable and had very high rates of failure, but surgeons did learn from these failures that silicone worked best as a gastric band material.

The First Adjustable Gastric Bands

Lubomyr Kuzmak, an important pioneer in adjustable gastric banding surgery, began using non-adjustable silicone gastric bands for obesity surgery in 1983. Three years later, this Ukrainian-American surgeon modified his design to include a portion that was adjustable. Kuzmak found that his adjustable gastric band provided better weight loss results with fewer complications, so he shared his findings with the surgical community.

Around the same time, Dr. Dag Hallberg developed and patented the Swedish Adjustable Gastric Band (SAGB) in his native country of Sweden. Because laparoscopic surgery was still uncommon at the time, both the Kuzmak band and the SAGB were initially implanted with open abdominal surgery.

Laparoscopic Gastric Banding Surgery and the LAP-BAND® system

The increasing use of laparoscopic surgery techniques in the 1990s truly transformed the practice of bariatric surgery, making weight loss surgery safer and less invasive. Soon, Kuzmak’s design was modified again to make the device easier to implant with laparoscopic surgery. In addition, bariatric surgeons nationwide began performing laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery and laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy surgery to combat obesity.

Finally, in 2001, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the LAP-BAND® for weight loss surgery in the United States. The LAP-BAND® device can be readjusted without surgery and comes in five different sizes to ensure a proper fit. This removable, adjustable gastric band has become extremely popular, helping thousands of people with obesity achieve their weight loss goals.

In addition to the LAP-BAND® device, the FDA also approved the latest version of the SAGB as the REALIZE® Adjustable Gastric Band in 2007. The REALIZE® Band is a one-size-fits-all alternative to LAP-BAND® surgery.

To learn more about LAP-BAND® surgery in the LA area, please contact our board-certified Los Angeles bariatric surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya to schedule your LAP-BAND® consultation at our office in Lakewood, California.

LAP-BAND® Alternatives

For many patients, LAP-BAND® surgery is an attractive option for weight loss surgery because it is minimally invasive and reversible. However, LAP-BAND® is not the best bariatric surgery procedure for every patient. Our LA LAP-BAND® surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya will go over all your weight loss surgery options in detail at your first bariatric surgery consultation, but it’s a good idea to be aware of the alternatives to LAP-BAND® surgery beforehand.

REALIZE® Band Weight Loss Surgery

The most similar alternative to LAP-BAND® surgery uses another type of adjustable gastric band called the REALIZE® Band. FDA-approved since 2007, the REALIZE® Band has been in use outside the United States for over 20 years and is known as the Swedish Adjustable Gastric Band (SAGB). The REALIZE® Band is one-size-fits-all, unlike the LAP-BAND®, and uses a suture-free injection port for adjustments. The REALIZE® Band also has a slightly lower maximum fill volume, but a wider range of adjustments.

Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Surgery

Instead of using an implanted device like the LAP-BAND®, laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery actually separates a small part of the stomach and seals it shut. The new, smaller stomach pouch is then directly connected to the smaller intestine. Our board-certified bariatric surgeon Dr. Dahiya has perfected a particular technique for gastric bypass that has actually been named after him—The Dahiya Vertical Micropouch™.

While gastric bypass surgery is slightly riskier than LAP-BAND® surgery and is not reversible, gastric bypass may generate greater weight loss than gastric banding surgery like the LAP-BAND® and REALIZE® Band. Gastric bypass surgery is also known as gastric Roux-en-Y surgery.

Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy

Unlike gastric banding surgery and gastric bypass, laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy does not involve creating a stomach pouch. Instead, Dr. Dahiya shrinks the stomach using a surgical stapling device, leaving a tube-like stomach with a capacity of about 200 ml. Laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy can be done as the first stage of weight loss surgery for patients with a very high BMI, followed by gastric bypass surgery. Sleeve gastrectomy generates less weight loss than other bariatric surgery procedures, but requires less follow-up care and nutritional supplements.

To learn more about the alternatives to LAP-BAND® surgery, please contact our board-certified Los Angeles bariatric surgeon Dr. Dahiya to schedule a consultation to discuss your weight loss surgery options.