Still Vomiting 5 Years After Lap Band

Question Below Submitted By:  

Sue B. (a patient from Bamaga Queensland, Australia )

I had a Lap-Band inserted in 2008 and lost 30kg. I learned the hard way which foods I could and couldn’t eat. My kids’ friends thought I was bulimic.

I had all the fluid taken out of my band recently as I was having so much trouble eating so many solid foods. I thought I could keep my weight down because I knew how much to eat, as in portion control and the right foods.

Now, with all the fluid out I am still having trouble keeping food down. I eat slowly. I chew my food well.

I don’t know what else to do. I live remotely so seeing a bariatric surgeon is a big deal. I’ve got myself back on a liquid diet but I get very bad GERD that even the medication prescribed doesn’t always work.

I feel washed out. I sleep sitting up with a heat pack on my belly which is the only thing to give me any comfort.

HELP! Thank you.

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Expert Responses to the Question Above

Response to Still Vomiting

by: Marc Bessler, M.D. Director Center for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Columbia University NY

Dear Sue B.

You symptoms sound like a band that is too tight. The fact that you have all the fluid out and still having problems including GERD makes me think you have a slip or prolapse.

While there are other possibilities, the first step is to get a barium swallow/esophagram which your local doctor can order at a radiology center. Get a copy of that study. If the pouch is large and/or asymmetric you will need to bring that study to a bariatric surgeon who can discuss your options.

Band revision, removal or change to another procedure may be options to consider.

Best of luck,

Marc Bessler, M.D.

long island bariatric surgeon

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DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the details provided. The above should never replace the advice of your local physicians as they have the ability to evaluate you in person.

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