The LAP-Band Recovery Process

When patients undergo LAP-Band surgery at Tijuana Bariatric Center, they know that they are in expert hands. However, prospective LAP-Band patients often wonder about the healing process following surgery. Here are some of the recovery basics that will help prospective patients form realistic expectations.

Resting Is a Key Part of Recovery

After undergoing LAP-Band surgery, patients should rest to avoid physical exertion and strenuous physical activity. During your initial days of recovery, our staff will carefully monitor you in a controlled medical setting so that potential complications can be identified and treated as soon as possible.

Promoting Circulation Through Walking

Even though you should get ample rest, it is ideal that you walk just a little when you are able. Light walking, even if just for a few minutes, can help promote circulation and prevent blood clots from forming in the legs. Just a little bit of physical activity can prevent major complications from occurring.

Addressing Pain and Discomfort

Soreness after surgery is a common issue for all bariatric procedures. Pain for LAP-Band procedure patients will typically be the most pronounced in the early days after the procedure. Rest and proper use of pain relievers can help make this discomfort manageable. The pain should steadily abate from day to day over the course of the first week or so.

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Changes to Your Diet After a LAP-Band Operation

Strict dietary changes are one of the most important parts of the recovery process following LAP-Band surgery. Patients will start with a diet of clear liquids, slowly introducing soft foods and solids over the course of a month or so. This will help your body adjust to the changes in stomach size.

While there is a little variation in the post-surgical diet, many LAP-Band patients can expect the following timeline and guidelines during the first month:

  • Phase One – Only clear liquids
  • Phase Two – Creamy and pureed foods
  • Phase Three – Soft foods that have been carefully prepared
  • Phase Four – Solid foods slowly brought back into the diet
  • Phase Five  – Begin to slowly start experimenting with different foods

The phases tend to correspond with the number of weeks after the operation. Some foods, such as steak, are more difficult to digest and may take longer for you to tolerate. They may cause pain, nausea or vomiting. Add foods slowly and if you can’t tolerate a food, try again in several weeks. Dairy foods may give you cramps, bloating or diarrhea, so be careful when introducing them. Be aware of how your body reacts every time you introduce a new food.

LAP-Band and Post-Surgical Scarring

The LAP-Band procedure is performed laparoscopically. This means that small incisions on the abdomen are used to avoid open surgery. The incisions are tiny and will leave behind small scars. Thankfully, since the incisions are so small, the scars after LAP-Band surgery are not especially noticeable and will fade with time.

What are the Side Effects and Risks Associated With LAP-Band?

Side effects include nausea and vomiting, ulcers at the band site, indigestion, dehydration and weight regain. Constipation is also common. LAP-Band surgery has a low risk of complications compared to other bariatric procedures. Infection, bleeding and abdominal pain can occur as well as slippage of the band, which can erode into the stomach and cause a mechanical malfunction, necessitating a revision operation. 

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What is a LAP-Band Fill?

A fill is a common term for gastric band adjustments. Following surgery, your body needs to heal. The first adjustment occurs about six to eight weeks later and involves injecting saline into a port just under the skin, which is connected to the band. Prior to this time, you may experience little change in appetite. Fills are painless and take place to enhance weight loss, especially if you experience a plateau. The band may also be loosened if you experience excessive nausea and vomiting.

I'm glad I had my sleeve surgery with Dr. Garcia! I am now a little over two months post-op and down 60 lbs. This surgery was the BEST decision I have ever made. Dr. Garcia was very personable, answered all my questions, and performed an excellent job. The hospital was very clean, small, and the staff were very friendly. I was impressed by the constant care I received. I always got pain meds and something for nausea when needed or I felt uncomfortable. Overall it was an excellent decision. I received the best care there compared to my experiences I've had in the US. Thank you Dr. Garcia!

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Returning to Normal Activities

Recovery varies with each individual. Over the course of a few weeks, patients will go from resting with just a little walking to a full resumption of their normal routine. Most patients can expect to return to work within a week after surgery, while other more strenuous activities can be resumed within six weeks following surgery. In addition to a new diet, patients will exercise more as a way to promote a healthier lifestyle. It's important to take things slowly when it comes to incorporating exercise and to follow your surgeon's instructions carefully.

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Why Choose Tijuana Bariatric Center?

From their impressive 98% success rate across all procedures to the 10,000 satisfied patients they’ve operated on, our board-certified surgeons at Tijuana Bariatric Center are known for their skill and precision. They consistently go above and beyond to deliver outstanding care. 

Our weight loss program offers far more than surgery, however. We provide in-depth education, individualized meal plans and dietary counseling, access to our online support groups, and continuous follow-up to ensure patients are able to maintain their healthy lifestyles long-term. By focusing not only on the physical aspects of the weight loss journey but on the social and emotional components as well, we provide a comprehensive weight loss solution.

Beyond our world-class surgeons, cutting-edge technology, and immaculate hospital setting, Tijuana Bariatric Center strives to provide affordable and accessible care for those who need it most. Our life-saving procedures are performed at a fraction of the cost one might find in the United States, Canada, or Europe. What’s more, we offer up to $3000 in medical tourism insurance included with every surgery. We are the only practice in North America to do so. Our ultimate goal is to help patients recapture their joy in living, free from the debilitating effects of obesity and its associated medical concerns.

Learn More About LAP-Band Surgery and Recovery

If you are ready to live a healthier and fulfilling lifestyle, we can help. Request a virtual consultation now! For additional information on how LAP-Band surgery and recovery can benefit you, contact the Tijuana Bariatric Center today by calling 800-970-0577.

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