Lap Band surgery has become a commonplace and less risky procedure, causing more persons to question the cost of lap band surgery to the average consumer. Lap band surgery is the least invasive weight loss surgery because it is done laparoscopically, which requires a shorter hospital stay with less drastic consequences. Conversely, the lap band surgery patient loses 1 - 3 pounds a week the first year and 1 pound a week thereafter. The gastric bypass patient loses more weight but has a much more invasive procedure that requires further hospitalization and carries a mortality rate of 10%. Both surgeries reduce diabetes, heart disease, sleep apnea and COPD risks and produce benefits for the consumer.
Then, for the consumer, the choice of which surgery to purchase comes down to cost and healing ramifications. Both have similar criteria: the criteria for lap band surgery is a BMI of over 40 or a BMI of more than 30 with obesity related health issues. Other criteria include being between the ages of 18 and 60, being obese more than 5 years, evidence of attempts to lose weight through diet and exercise with more than one organization, weighing more than twice your suggested weight for your age and height, and willingness to undergo counseling for changes to your diet and lifestyle. You can also have no alcohol or drug addiction issues or being undergoing current treatment for addiction.
It is imperative that the obesity surgery candidate have a willingness to change and be monitored by a team of doctors and nurses. One of the criteria for lap band surgery is behavior modification counseling and earnest participation; it has been proven that the surgery candidate that undergoes the procedure but does not affect life style changes has a risk of regaining their weight and even tearing open the incision through unwanted weight gain. Clients that meet weekly with a therapist and an exercise counselor are much more successful in their weight loss and in their personal lifestyle changes.
Relationships often change as a result of successful weight loss of over 100 pounds. It stands to reason that the previously obese patient would change their preoccupation with food and dining to a healthy lifestyle of exercise and moderate eating. Often people choose as their friends those who share their same hobbies and entertainment venues. If a drastic change is made where someone stops frequenting restaurants, fast food establishments and bars and instead goes to Salad diners and health clubs for exercise, their old friends may not share their interests. Also in consideration for modification will be decision making skills and analysis of lifestyle trends as the patient will be meeting at least weekly with a therapist. Some of the issues that contribute to obesity such as unhappiness, anxiety and depression will be examined for their root causes and concerns. Some friendships may not withstand the stress of close examination for their superficiality and benefit to the patient.
The cost of lap band surgery should be counted in terms of dollars, but also of value are the opportunity for better health, an extended life, and a stronger sense of self and belonging. Obesity marginalizes people to the extent that they often do not attend family functions, class reunions, or any outside activity that will be photographed or video produced. The surgery alone will cost from $4,000 upward. This cost includes hospitalization, pre-testing, pre-counseling, the initial doctor visit and the follow up physician care. This cost does also include the anesthesiologist and the cardiologist visits and care. Support groups are often free to the participant but the weekly counseling may not be included in this cost, this will vary according to the health provider.