Lap-Band Unfilled and Filled
Illustration of the Lap-Band® in an unfilled and a filled state

What to Look for in a Lap-Band Surgeon

Once you have reviewed your options and arrived at the decision to have Lap-Band surgery, the next step in the process is to find a Lap-Band surgeon who fits your needs. Lap-Band surgery is one of the newer weight loss surgery procedures and is becoming increasingly popular since it is much less invasive than traditional bariatric weight loss surgeries like Gastric Bypass. Add in the fact that the procedure is reversible and you will understand why many overweight individuals are now opting for the Lap-Band procedure.

Trying to find a Lap-Band surgeon who meets your needs can be somewhat of a trying task if you do not know where to start. When you are first beginning your search, one of the best ways to find a reputable Lap-Band surgeon is get referrals and recommendation. You can start by asking your primary care physician his or her opinion about different weight loss surgeons. If you know someone who has had weight loss surgery, it may be helpful to ask about their surgeon and experience with the procedure.

Another important element to consider when you are considering a Lap-Band surgeon is experience. Making sure that your Lap-Band surgeon has enough experience in performing weight loss surgery can help prevent unwanted complications. Don't be afraid to ask "How many times have you done the Lap-Band procedure?" If his or her answer is "Three or Four times" you may want to consider looking elsewhere.

In order to get an idea of how qualified your potential Lap-Band surgeon is, you should first check his or her qualifications. Is he or she board certified for Bariatric surgery? How many gastric band procedures has he or she performed? You will also want to ask about the rate of complications your potential Lap-Band surgeon has experienced.

Once you have compiled and reviewed qualifications for potential surgeons, you will trim your list of potential doctors even further. After checking qualifications and experience, the next step in the process to find a surgeon is to choose a doctor who is sensitive to your needs and genuinely interested in helping you succeed in losing the weight you desire. You will likely need to schedule consultations with your top choices to select the right surgeon. If you can't get any referrals you can certainly use the list of surgeons provided on this website as a starting point.

A good Bariatric surgeon is normally willing to allow you to speak with a few of his or her previous Lap-Band patients or attend their support groups. If your potential surgeon allows you this opportunity, be sure to speak with several patients and attend a few support group meetings so that you get a good idea of your potential surgeon's skill and experience. If you speak with someone who has had complications with Lap-Band surgery, be sure to ask them how the doctor handled the situation; the answer may be a deciding factor in whether you choose a particular Lap-Band surgeon. Talking to several people who have had Lap-Band surgery is a huge help in deciding whether a particular surgeon will meet your needs.

The Lap-Band surgeon that you ultimately choose should be committed to meeting your needs and willing to answer any questions that you have regarding the gastric band. He or she should be receptive to answering your questions and discussing your surgical options in detail, if the doctor is short and rushes your conversation this is probably not the doctor for you. Any information that you need to help make your decision regarding Lap-Band surgery, your Lap-Band surgeon should be able to provide it to you so make the most of your visit, come in prepared with as many questions written down as possible. This insures that you don't forget anything and also allows you to use the doctors time efficiently and effectively.