Brighton tried and failed many times to lose weight. Through grade school and high school, she struggled. “My heaviest weight recorded was in late 2018/early 2019, when I weighed around 300 pounds. I finally reached a breaking point during the summer of 2020,” she said. The country was five months into the pandemic, and Brighton had ushered in her 21st birthday. “I spent those months sitting around watching TV, eating unhealthy takeout, and drinking sugary alcoholic beverages. I had no energy and no stamina; I was dealing with severe acid reflux, and I was constantly in physical discomfort. I lost it after another late-night fast food run when I realized that I needed to get it together. I seriously needed help.”
Brighton was young. The prospect of undergoing bariatric surgery worried her family. But after meeting with her surgeon Dr. Davtyan and discussing the risks and benefits of each type of bariatric surgery available, Brighton was “clear that the Lap-Band Program was the safest and most comfortable choice for me.” She said that “the fact that it is so non-invasive compared to other types of bariatric surgery was very comforting to us. Once we understood how the system worked, it felt like a no-brainer.”
At just six months post-op, Brighton has lost 100 lbs. “I’m not quite done with my journey, but I am so amazed that I’ve even made it here! Before surgery, I was wearing a size 3XL-4XL. But just this last week I went shopping and bought only a size Medium!” she said.
Brighton continues to see her surgeon for check-ups. “My doctor and nurses are all so supportive and encouraging; they made the process so much easier for me. I always felt that I had someone to call if I needed advice or guidance. I am so thankful that I went for all of my checkups. It helped me stay on track and know that I was doing everything right.”
With the help of the Lap-Band Program, Brighton has found a path toward lasting weight loss and health. “Even in such a short time, the Lap-Band Program has completely turned my life around. I am a musician and performer, but I had lost so much of my confidence. In addition to now eating so much healthier, I exercise all the time. I have much more energy and stamina, and I can finally wear whatever I want and express myself freely.”
For Brighton, the hard work has been worth it. “I would let someone know that this procedure isn’t just a fix-all. You need to be dedicated and ready to work hard to change your life. But I would also tell them that it is so worth it. If you are ready to turn everything around but are afraid you won’t be able to follow through, this procedure will really help you get where you need to be. After trying so many times before to get healthy, the Lap-Band Program was the thing that got me there! I have never felt better.”
The Lap-Band System is indicated for weight reduction for patients with obesity, with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of at least 40 kg/m2 or a BMI of at least 30 kg/m2 with one or more obesity-related comorbid conditions. It is indicated for use only in adult patients who have failed more conservative weight reduction alternatives, such as supervised diet, exercise and behavior modification programs. Patients who elect to have this surgery must make the commitment to accept significant changes in their eating habits for the rest of their lives.
The Lap-Band System is not recommended for non-adult patients (patients under 18 years of age), patients with conditions that may make them poor surgical candidates or increase the risk of poor results, who are unwilling or unable to comply with the required dietary restrictions, or who currently are or may be pregnant.
The Lap-Band System is a long-term implant. Explant and replacement surgery may be required. Patients who become pregnant or severely ill, or who require more extensive nutrition may require deflation of their bands. Anti-inflammatory agents, such as aspirin, should be used with caution and may contribute to an increased risk of band erosion.
Placement of the Lap-Band System is major surgery and, as with any surgery, death can occur. Possible complications include the risks associated with the medications and methods used during surgery, the risks associated with any surgical procedure, and the patient’s ability to tolerate a foreign object implanted in the body. Most common related adverse events include: Band slippage, pouch dilation, stoma obstruction, gastroesophageal reflux, esophageal dilation, cholelithiasis, incisional infection, abdominal pain, gastroenteritis, or nausea and vomiting may occur. Reoperation may be required. Rapid weight loss may result in complications that may require additional surgery. Deflation of the band may alleviate excessively rapid weight loss or esophageal dilation.
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