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Whats the longest any of you have heard of someone having the band without complication?



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I will offer my honest band experience, both good and bad. Have I had complications? Yes. Do I regret getting the band? Absolutely not. Here's a little back story...

I was banded Jan 2011; highest weight was 284, lowest since being banded 165. My weight was in the 270's when I started this journey, so I can safely say I have lost about 110lbs. My normal weight is around 170-175, though I am up to about 177 due to being 5 1/2 months pregnant. While I will say the band is responsible for about 75-85% of my weight loss, I will honest and admit that I used Weight Watchers to help shed the last 20 or so because I needed the accountability. I unfortunately have been someone who has rarely if ever felt satisfied eating just 1c of food as suggested, but getting another fill would be too much for me. I currently have somewhere between 6-7cc's of Fluid in my band.

Like Megan mentioned, reflux and vomiting are possible, even with the new bands. I actually got aspiration pneumonia as I would wake up vomiting and would then hyperventilate because I have a very sensitive gag reflex; the band only exacerbated this. It was to the point that I would wake up vomiting even sitting straight up sometimes, not just lying down. To this day I am aware that I cannot go to sleep within 2 hours of eating or drinking or risk having this happen. Another thing Megan mentioned was vomiting and having food from several previous hours come up; I have no idea how or why this happens but this has occurred to me. I have seen food regurgitated that I hadn't eat in 10+ hours, so perhaps my pouch doesn't empty properly...I have no clue.

That being said, I do not regret my decision. I am healthier than I have been in about 14+ years, and I know I have the band to thank for that. Being banded helped me not only physically but also emotionally, as it forced me to find positive ways to deal with my problems instead of using food as a crutch. I feel so much more confident and believe I am finally able to be that person that was hiding under all those pounds. I can't tell you what your experience will be, I can only share mine. I accept the responsibility of knowing some of my issues were probably caused by the fact that I have not followed the 'lifestyle' to the letter...had I who knows if I would have had these things happen. What I do know is that, like I said, I am grateful for what the band has done for me and should complications continue then I will take the necessary steps, but I will not badmouth the band because at the end of the day I made the decision that was the best for me at the time.

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I started out in this thread differentiating between band and sleeve, and wanted to add that in term of long term studies, there are nearly none that can be done for the sleever of more than 10 years, because they don't exist. The risk with the band is this: it may not work for you, you may have complications that will impact your life, this may cause you more suffering than not. But it does work for many people, and there are in fact studies around it. And if it does not work, you can have it removed and in the majority of cases, this alleviates or reduces the issues caused by the band. You can't have your stomach re-attached after removing it to create a sleeve, whatever your issue is.

The reason I chose NOT to have the sleeve when I had the option of revising is that I know no WLS comes with guarantees, but I would prefer one that I have had success with, that had a smaller chance of death than other surgeries, and also has been around long enough for there to BE long term studies on it.

My surgeon (a professer) has been placing bands for over a decade, and he still believes in them and their ability to promote long term health benefits at a smaller risk to the patient than other WLS. He also does the sleeve btw. He advised me to get another band rather than revise to a sleeve. With his experience and having been in the business of banding as long as he has, I'm happy to trust his advice.

Coincidentally (or maybe not), I'm also in Australia, where the Paul O'Brien and Wendy Brown study was conducted, and here, the lapband doesn't get the kind of bashing that it seems to get in the US. Over here it's not a fad, it's an accepted measure to combat obesity and in fact most insurance companies here will pay for it if you have a BMI of 35 or above, end of story. No hoops, no psych evaluations, no 6 months supervised diet to qualify, because the fact is, they accept that lapband surgery will likely save them money in the long run for obesity-related health problems, so they invest in the band as preventative medicine now. They wouldn't do that, imo, if they didn't reap a financial (long term) benefit from paying out for the lapband. This shows a confidence in the effectiveness of the band from private companies who are hugely risk adverse.

And as for me, the band has really has worked, and worked like a charm. Even when having had a complication (a leak) and was gaining weight, I accepted that sometimes something you want to work, doesn't work. And you then look at your options, because you HAVE to assume nothing is forever. I think in that respect I have had far more realistic expectations of what the band would do for me than most people I see.

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WOW...thanks for scaring the SH*T out of me....just when you think you are all ready to get your surgery date....now what????

dont be scared....but just know it is major surgery and (things happen)...we cant spend our lives worrying about things that may or may not happen..sometimes it does.....its life...its how we deal with it that either enhances or hinders our lives...get your education from your doctor (and not ones who had issues and are stressing dont be banded and also get your education from your doctor and keep in mind that while alot of people have success (me included and i am early on yet) and many others for years with no issues, that it is just the luck of the draw

if you want to have WLS, follow the rules as best you can for the most success and take from it what you will......that is what i am doing.....and if later on i encounter issues, i will deal with it....but i will always be thankful for what the band has done for me...you know i am proud of you for making this choice...it is one we all had to make.

no one WLS is better than the other...there are options

problems can and do occur with each WLS option....

and so does bird sh*t falling on your windshield.....

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Since the topic was about keeping the band long term without complications, I will stick to that.

No. I've had my band almost 3 years and had a small unfill last fall due to heartburn and some reflux. In June I started having severe night time reflux, difficulty swallowing and what I thought was getting stuck. I had a barium swallow showing that the valve between the esophagus and stomach was not opening. My band looks fine, but the doctors believe there is scar tissue under the band and maybe around my esophogus causing this. The radiologist told me the hospital is seeing a lot of this complication recently with the newer realize and lap bands. I'm going to have my band removed and I'm told that the amount of damage won't be known until they get in there and take a look. I had a manometry and it showed poor "mobility?". This is seen in a disease called achalasia which I was told is very unusual. I'm scared, since I'm so close to goal and was planning on keeping my band for 6-12 months after I reached goal, gradually emptying the Fluid.< /p>

My complications started at 23 months post op. I followed all the band rules exactly. If I had to choose today I would be torn. On the one hand I lost a lot of weight. On the other, I don't know if I have permanent damage to my digestive system from the band.

Read the link I gave in an earlier reply to your post. I've been reading the posts there and it's pretty enlightening.

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Since the topic was about keeping the band long term without complications, I will stick to that.

No. I've had my band almost 3 years and had a small unfill last fall due to heartburn and some reflux. In June I started having severe night time reflux, difficulty swallowing and what I thought was getting stuck. I had a barium swallow showing that the valve between the esophagus and stomach was not opening. My band looks fine, but the doctors believe there is scar tissue under the band and maybe around my esophogus causing this. The radiologist told me the hospital is seeing a lot of this complication recently with the newer realize and lap bands. I'm going to have my band removed and I'm told that the amount of damage won't be known until they get in there and take a look. I had a manometry and it showed poor "mobility?". This is seen in a disease called achalasia which I was told is very unusual. I'm scared, since I'm so close to goal and was planning on keeping my band for 6-12 months after I reached goal, gradually emptying the Fluid.

My complications started at 23 months post op. I followed all the band rules exactly. If I had to choose today I would be torn. On the one hand I lost a lot of weight. On the other, I don't know if I have permanent damage to my digestive system from the band.

Read the link I gave in an earlier reply to your post. I've been reading the posts there and it's pretty enlightening.

This concerns me a bit, as it sounds like what I have been experiencing! I will be seeing a new lapband dr soon (hopefully) as I have moved to a new state so I will mention this to him...thank you for the info.

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You have yet to share any actual facts. Just a lot of BS based on...well...nothing of relevance.

Do you have actual facts? Actual studies? If so, by all means share them. I'd love to see the data the proves we're all doomed. I'm sure the FDA would too. I mean, you claim to know far more than the FDA or any of our surgeons do. You should really share your proof.

Contrary to popular belief, misery doesn't love company.

GET IT MISSY!!!!! You are my girl!!!

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I can't believe how everyone attacked the person with a negative experience- I want to know good bad and ugly you're all just pro-band so you're mad!! I'm afraid for my future and I want to be able to bring this up to my doctor before the band is placed!! Whoever started this thread wanted opinions! Jeez let the person have one

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Wow this is a scary thread, ive only been banded almost 6 months and I never thought about the what if this happens or what if that happened, I think I was just so over weight I knew if I didn't do something heck the weight would kill me, but every ones body is different so best thing to do is pray do your research and be confident you made the wright choice, good luck..

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I can't believe how everyone attacked the person with a negative experience- I want to know good bad and ugly you're all just pro-band so you're mad!! I'm afraid for my future and I want to be able to bring this up to my doctor before the band is placed!! Whoever started this thread wanted opinions! Jeez let the person have one

Connie, to be fair the regular posters here do see a LOT of band bashing. And people naturally get defensive when anyone says things like "it doesn't work" or "don't get the band" because for some of us, the risk of complications does not outweigh the risk of staying overweight. And for a lot of people, the band DOES work so saying it doesn't work simply isn't true.

I think knowing all possible complications is important, and weighing out the cost of ANYTHING against the benefits it might bring, so that each person can make an informed decision. I think more people should be as informed about the band as they can possibly be before taking the leap: if they did, maybe they would have clearer and more realistic expectations of how the band will work for them.

Information is only as good as the delivery of it, and I think that's the important bit that is often missed.

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This concerns me a bit, as it sounds like what I have been experiencing! I will be seeing a new lapband dr soon (hopefully) as I have moved to a new state so I will mention this to him...thank you for the info.

It should concern anyone with a band. My situation isn't unique. I'm just starting to really understand what is happening to my stomach/esophagus due to the band. These issues weren't included in my informed consent.

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I'm curious HOW a person goes about causing these problems? Since it's often said here that only 5% of band problems are caused by the band and the rest is from non-compliance?

When ALLERGAN states these as ADVERSE EVENTS in their own literature

Table 1: Serious Adverse Events Considered

Related to the LAP-BAND® System for the US

Pivotal Study in Severely Obese Adults

Band Slippage, Pouch Dilatation

Stoma Obstruction

Gastroesophageal reflux

Esophageal Dilatation

Cholelithiasis

Incisional Infection

Abdominal Pain

Gastroenteritis

Nausea and/or Vomiting

Port Leak

Delayed Esophageal Emptying

GI Perforation

Hernia

Band Erosion

Chest Pain

Dysphagia

Infection

Asthma

Atelectasis

Dehydration

Headache

Abnormal Healing

Hiatal Hernia

Improper Band Placement

respiratory Disorder

Thrombosis

Thyroid Disorder

Death

All Adverse Events that Occurred at a Rate

of 5% or More for the US Pivotal Study in Severely

Obese Adults

Nausea and/or Vomiting

Gastroesophageal reflux

Stoma Obstruction

Constipation

Dysphagia

Diarrhea

Abnormal Stools

Abdominal Pain

Asthenia

Incisional Infection

Infection

Fever

Hernia

Pain

Chest Pain

Pain Incision

Band Slippage/Pouch Dilation

Port Site Pain

Port Displacement

Serious adverse effects; Lower BMI Study

Abdominal Pain

Shoulder Pain

Dysphagia

Medical Device Complication

(Band Erosion)

Gastric Outlet Obstruction

Vomiting

And I KNOW we ALL received this information Prior to getting a band ;)

And ALL WLS has risks but to blame someone for ALL of these complications seems a little naive.

And just so I don't gt accused of making them up her is the Link to Allegan

http://www.allergan.com/assets/pdf/lapband_dfu.pdf

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i am on my lunch reading this....and saw it pop up and read the *latest last word*....so here be my last word on this thread......

issues/complications can and do happen (with ALL WLS)

but not always

via the (bands fault) or the person or a combo of both

not a guarantee.....and not a definite......that it will or won't....

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I'm curious HOW a person goes about causing these problems?

Real easily- by not being smart and following the rules. Bands left too tight for weeks or months (sometimes years), vomiting repeatedly and not doing anything about it, over eating chronically, and even not following up with proper care from their doctors. Heck, even cheating on the post op diet can cause some of the complications.

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I'm sorry Mis73, but there is no way to determine which complications are caused by patients not following the rules, doctors over filling bands and the band just causing damage. The facts are becoming more clear with time. As the radiologist told me, the newer bands are causing complications that don't involve erosion. The complications being seen now are related to swallowing disorders which prevent food from even getting to the pouch. I just joined a group that is made up of people with this problem and its amazing how similar the stories are...the symptoms seem to get worse after emptying the band. When their bands are removed, there is extensive scar tissue and damage to surrounding tissues when the scar tissue is removed. Most of the people who had their band removed for this reason are not able to revise due to this damage. We can't discount personal experience for lack of official studies.

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I remember being admitted to the hospital for my first baby. I had to sign a huuuuge informed consent form listing in gory detail all the things that could possibly go wrong for my baby or me during the birthing process....up to and including death. I was panicked, but obviously being a week past my due date, there was no other option than to go forward.

With WLS, we do have the option not to go through with it. And I certainly don't want to "talk anyone into" have a procedure, be it lap band, sleeve or anything else. But only because a lawyer put a condition on a list does not mean I have a statistically highly significant chance of developing it. With law suits being what they are, something only has to happen ONCE to SOMEONE (who could very well have other complications) to make it a "known side effect"...

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