Lap-Band Weight Loss (then, the band lost it’s fill)

Question Below Submitted By:  

Dori Lower (a patient from Gainesville, FL)

I had my band placed Dec 2005. My last fill was Aug 2006. I started at 240#, and lost down to 120#. I was on cloud 9, and stayed at that weight until Jan 2015. Then I started gradually gaining weight until here I am, Dec 2016 and 175#.

That was enough!!! I worked too long and hard to regain even another pound without finding out why my band seemed to no longer be working. I visited with my favorite bariatric surgeon (not the surgeon that placed the band, he is now deceased). Through fluoroscopy and draining my band what he found was:

Perfect positioning of the band, an S-shaped esophagus (it should be straight), and a total of just about a tenth of a cc of fill (it should have had 2.3 cc of fill). He recommended 2 weeks of liquid diet followed by another fluoroscopy to determine if the esophagus would begin to shrink and become straight again. I had the follow-up 2 days ago: No Change.

Recommendation: remove the band, allow several months for my esophagus to return to normal, then have bypass surgery.

I fully trust this surgeon and his guidance. So why am I here? Because I was so successful for so long, I’m at a loss that this is my option, I hope not my only option. I never experienced any nausea, vomiting, heartburn, reflux complications (I was already on 40 mg Nexium 2 times a day prior to my band placement). As I started to gain weight, I noticed I was able to eat a little more, but still kept close to my target weight until July 2015 when I had to have all my top teeth removed and welcomed my new dentures. That’s when I started really putting on the weight. My fault, I consumed a lifetime supply of ice cream, in small quantities, because of my band. But when I stopped the ice cream and thought I would lose the weight right back to where I should be, it never happened. I continued to gain weight!!!

I’m devastated at the thought of my band being removed. Even more than that, I’m becoming severely depressed that the bypass is the answer. I will do the bypass, but I was trying to research other options, like removing part of the esophagus and retaining my band. This site was the best information I could find, but still didn’t address any esophageal modifications.

I will be 64 in 5 days, and the idea of the bypass scares me. Especially since I have already been told that I will be undergoing a major surgery in Feb 2017 for an abdominal aortic aneurysm.

Any help, suggestions, advice, knowledge, or ideas would be greatly appreciated.

Thank You for listening to my rants and raves.

Bariatric Surgery Source

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