Gastric Band Adjustment
Gastric bands play an important and flexible roll in weight loss. Gastric bands are tube-like bands that are clamped around a small portion of the top of your stomach creating a very small pouch. This small pouch is unable to hold very much food and effectively reduces the amount of calories you are able to consume.
Gastric band adjustment is a normal part of your follow up care after having a LAP-BAND or REALIZE Band inserted. During an adjustment your doctor adds or takes out saline (sterile salty water) from the band. Because the band is hollow, adding or subtracting saline makes it tighter or looser around the top of the stomach.
The band is attached by a tube to an injection port that is placed just beneath the skin. Saline is added or removed using a special needle inserted into the port.
The first “fill” or adjustment of your gastric band usually occurs about 8-weeks following your surgery. This period may be slightly shorter or longer depending on your individual circumstances.
The first gastric band may make you a little anxious but there is absolutely no need for concern. It is a minor procedure and there is minimal discomfort – just a small injection.
Occasionally X-ray fluoroscopy may be used to locate the port and ensure everything is working properly.
While your individual circumstances may require slightly different instructions, here are some general tips to make your band adjustments successful.
- Ensure you are maintaining your fluid intake at the recommended levels.
- Don’t drink cold fluids before the adjustment
- Don’t eat a big meal the night before your fill and no solid food for at least 6 hours before the adjustment so your stomach pouch is empty.
- Restrict your diet to full liquid for 24 hours after the adjustment, then soft foods for an additional day before resuming your regular diet.
- If you are traveling a long distance to get the adjustment, consider staying in Jacksonville for the night to ensure you feel okay with the adjustment before returning home. This is especially important for your first couple of fills.