Have you heard that the LapBand system is one of the most successful ways to lose weight? For those severely to morbidly obese, it is. With that said, before you get your heart set on undergoing the procedure, here is what you need to know.

The LapBand system is not like traditional gastric bypass surgery. No cutting or stapling of the stomach pouch is required. Instead, an adjustable gastric band is positioned. Why should this be important to you? It significantly reduces the risk of complications, death, and shortens the recovery time. This is when compared to traditional gastric bypass surgery.

The LapBand system is not right for everyone. Patients suffering from obesity are advised against getting their hopes up. Instead of deciding on LapBand surgery, opt for research first. Make sure you are eligible for the procedure. So, what makes you eligible? LapBand surgeons have their own eligibility requirements, but most opt for those between the ages of 18 and 60, those who are 100 pounds overweight, and those who have the ability to curb diet as needed.

In terms of diet restrictions, a lot is expected from LapBand patients. That is why surgery is not recommended for all. If you have been unable to curb your eating habits in the past, practice before seeking LapBand surgery. An all-liquid diet is needed in one to two weeks following surgery. This is difficult for many, but an important requirement. An improper diet can lead to dangerous complications, including acid reflux, regurgitation, band slippage, pain, discomfort, nausea, and vomiting.

The LapBand surgery is expensive. It is sad that a procedure that can save so many lives is out of reach for most, in terms of finances. On average, the LapBand surgery costs between $15,000 and $20,000. This is a significant cost, but well worth it for many. If you are covered by medical insurance, consult with your provider first. Some providers do extend coverage for the LapBand system. If not, opt for a personal loan, credit card payment, or inquire about monthly payment plans.

In keeping with costs, it is important to focus on foreign surgeries. Yes, the LapBand surgery is cheaper in foreign countries, such as Mexico. On average, the costs are $5,000 or more less. With that said, don’t start making your travel plans right away. Speaking of those travel plans, consider the cost. They can increase the cost of LapBand surgery, making it not such a good deal after all.

Many surgeons in the United States are qualified to perform the LapBand procedure. On average, patients do not need to travel far. This not only reduces travel costs, but makes recovery easier, as you are in familiar surroundings. Since you do have options, price compare if costs are a concern. Of course, remember you want a quality, Board Certified Surgeon performing your procedure. That is another benefit of staying in the United States, as medical professionals must adhere to strict laws.

LapBand adjustments are common. When many patients hear their surgeon wants or needs to adjust their band, fear automatically sets in. This should not a concern. Adjustments are common. In fact, most patients need to have their band adjusted once or twice. Luckily, adjustments can be made to the LapBand system without surgery.

The LapBand procedure is not permanent. Unlike other forms of gastric bypass surgery, the LapBand system is not a permanent procedure. In addition to adjustments, removal is easy as well. Whether a patient wants to continue weight loss years after surgery naturally or if complications arise, safe removal is possible. After removal of the LapBand, the stomach will return to normal.