Jay Michael Snow, MD

Gastric Banding

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Gastric Banding

Laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding (LAGB), most commonly known as the LAP-BAND®, is a bariatric surgery to treat obesity. The band system is a weight loss system or tool that utilizes a silicone band placed around the upper part of the stomach to restrict the amount of food a person can eat. Similar to the sleeve gastrectomy, the LAP-BAND® is performed without re-routing the small intestine. However, the gastric band is different from bariatric procedures such as sleeve gastrectomy and gastric bypass surgery, because the banding is performed without dividing the stomach, stapling, or entering the gastrointestinal tract.

Benefits of Gastric Banding

  • Gastric Banding does not interfere with vitamin absorption
  • Gastric Banding is reversible by band removal
  • Improvement in co-morbidities such as diabetes, sleep apnea, and hypertension*
  • Improves overall quality of life*

Plan Your Gastric Banding Procedure

  • Covered by Insurance: Yes
  • Financing Available: Yes
  • Average Self-Pay Cost*: $16,400
  • Minimally Invasive: Yes
  • Non-Surgical: No
  • Average Procedure Time: 1 hour
  • Typical Hospital Stay: Out-patient
  • Typical Recovery Time: 5 to 7 days
*Prices are subject to change.

The Gastric Banding Procedure

This laparoscopic surgery involves placing the adjustable band around the upper portion of the stomach which serves to create a small stomach pouch. Dr. Snow is able to perform this procedure laparoscopically, using very small incisions and a high-definition camera to guide the surgical instruments. The band is tightened during a series of office visits after the procedure. This tightening of the gastric band results in a small pouch which allows patients to feel satisfied eating much smaller portions of food. The decreased caloric intake leads to weight loss.

Gastric Band Recovery

The gastric band procedure is typically performed as an outpatient where the patient is discharged the day of the procedure. Patients are typically able to resume regular activity within one week.* You can expect several follow-up appointments with us following surgery to ensure optimal healing, prescribe supplements, and receive dietary and exercise recommendations.

Gastric Banding Adjustments

The adjustable band is a thin, hollow ring with a small narrow tube that is used to fill the ring with saline, which in turn tightens the restriction around the stomach. Gastric band patients will typically have an appointment for an adjustment approximately one month after the initial band placement procedure. Additional adjustments, also called fills, may be needed if the patient experiences a stall in weight loss, increased hunger, or insufficient restriction.

In order to adjust the band and improve weight loss, we utilize a fluoroscopy machine right there in the office. This helps us visualize the tightness of the band and to monitor for signs that the band may be too tight.

Dr. Snow is skilled in gastric band adjustments and offers adjustments not only to St. Louis Bariatrics patients but additionally to those who have had gastric band surgery elsewhere and are seeking a new surgeon for care. If you are in search of a practice to help with your band issues, please contact St. Louis Bariatrics today to schedule an appointment.

Gastric Band Results

Patients who adhere to our post operative guidelines of dieting and exercise typically lose 40-50% of their excess weight within two years of surgery. The most significant weight loss occurs within the first year after surgery. Patients who adopt a healthy lifestyle and exercise routine are the most successful in maintaining weight loss.*

Our Patients’ Results

Hayley's weight loss transformationCynthia's weight loss transformationDarik's weight loss transformationJeremy's weight loss transformationToni's weight loss transformationJonathon's weight loss transformation

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Gastric Band Removal or Revision Surgery

Occasionally, patients choose to have their gastric bands removed. This is a choice that people may seek for personal reasons, because they aren’t happy with their weight loss results, or, in rare cases, because of complications with the band device. At times the band needs to be surgically repositioned, which is called a revision. Dr. Snow offers both gastric band removal and revision surgery. Learn More About Gastric Band Revision at St. Louis Bariatrics.

FAQs About Gastric Banding

Am I a candidate for gastric banding?

If you suffer from morbid obesity, have a body mass index (BMI) over 30, and have struggled to lose weight, you may be a candidate for gastric banding. Dr. Snow takes time to guide each patient through the options available to them and he will help you determine the choice that best meets your needs and goals. A consultation with Dr. Snow is the first step on your journey to better health. Join Us for a FREE Seminar or Schedule Your Consultation.

How long does a gastric band last?

While there is no definitive life span of a gastric band, some studies suggest that more than 50% of bands are removed after 7 to 10 years due to a high failure rate of long-term weight loss.1

Does gastric banding have any risks?

All surgical procedures have some risk involved. Gastric banding has the lowest complication rate amongst currently available weight loss surgeries.2 Some possible side effects include heartburn, acid reflux, GERD, esophageal dilation, nausea, vomiting, band erosion, and band slippage.

Can gastric banding help with obesity-related health problems?

Losing weight with a gastric band can help improve certain medical conditions such as sleep apnea, high blood pressure, heart disease, and Type 2 diabetes.3

Contact Us

If you have questions, are seeking care for your gastric band, or are interested in gastric band removal or revision, contact us to schedule an appointment.

*Results may vary.


1 UCLA Health. Lap Band Revision. Available: https://www.uclahealth.org/medical-services/surgery/bariatrics/obesity-treatments/lap-band-revision#:~:text=Complications%20of%20Lap%20Band,-Lap%20Band%20surgery&text=Many%20studies%20have%20shown%20that,complications%20after%207%2D10%20years. Accessed November 30, 2022.
2 Cleveland Clinic. Gastric Band Surgery (LAP-Band). Available: https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/17163-lap–band-surgery. Accessed November 30, 2022.
3 Cleveland Clinic. Gastric Band Surgery (LAP-Band). Available: https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/17163-lap–band-surgery. Accessed November 30, 2022.

Dr. Jay Snow has either authored or reviewed and approved this content.

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