Potential Risks with Gastric Banding

As with any surgery, there is always a degree of risk. Patients should consider that whilst Gastric Banding is a procedure with minimal complications and risks, such outcomes cannot be guaranteed.

One should also consider that weight loss surgery outcomes vary for each individual and that a small percentage of patients will not lose weight following a lap band. However, up to 80% of patients will typically lose around 50 – 60% of their excess body weight, particularly those who comply with medical, dietary, and behavioural advice.

Although they are rare, the most common form of complications with the gastric band are as follows:

Band Erosion (0.5% occurrence)

This occurs when the band erodes or migrates inside the stomach wall. To confirm this an endoscopy is performed and the band will need to be removed. If this complication does occur, then the Lap Band system is unlikely to be successful and another weight loss procedure should be considered.

Band Slippage (1% occurrence)

This occurs when the lap band slips out of position and causes the upper pouch to dialate. An x-ray will confirm if slippage has occurred, and either removal or repositioning of the band will be required.

Infection (3% – 5%)

In a small percentage of cases infection can develop in the port area following surgery. Early treatment usually involves just a dose of antibiotics. In very few cases, the port will be removed for a period of time.

WLSA will be happy to discuss any potential complications and risks with you during your consultations. Please contact us for a consultation.