The band consists of a silicone tube with a balloon device on one end and an inflation port on the other. It is fitted at the very top of the stomach with a small ‘inflation port’ underneath the skin on the left hand side of the tummy. It works by dimming the appetite and slowing your eating down. This, together with behavioral changes and mindful eating aims to result in lessening the volume of food you eat. The tightness of the band can be adjusted by altering the volume of liquid within the band by a simple injection into the port. The operation takes less than an hour, although there is time taken in both putting you to sleep and waking you up afterwards so the overall time away from the ward is three to four hours.
Advantages: The gastric band is the simplest and safest procedure. There are no permanent changes made to the stomach and it can be removed (although this would allow your weight to regain, so you should consider the operation as permanent).
Disadvantages: It may not work for everyone and up to ten per cent require further surgery, possibly as an emergency and it may not reduce appetite. You will need to attend hospital frequently for checks and adjustments initially.