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The Lap-Band® vs. Gastric Sleeve: a 10-year comparison

January 27, 2022

When choosing the right weight-loss surgery option for you, it’s important to consider not only the short-term results but the long-term success, as well. With bariatric procedures like the gastric sleeve, rapid weight-loss occurs in the months immediately following recovery, but that isn’t always indicative of lasting success. On the other hand, with the Lap-Band® procedure, healthy weight loss occurs at a slower, more gradual rate, which actually offers some unique advantages for patients. 

In this article, we’ll examine how the long-term weight-loss success of the Lap-Band compares to that of the gastric sleeve, which may provide insight on which procedure is right for you.

Research on the 10-year success of the Lap-Band

The 2021 study “Ten‑Year Results of Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy: Retrospective

Matched Comparison with Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding—Is There a Significant Difference in Long Term?” aims to compare the success rates of the gastric sleeve with the Lap-Band. During the study, Lap-Band patients were matched to a gastric sleeve patient with a corresponding age, sex, and BMI. Their weight-loss success was examined at one year, five years, and 10 years after their surgery. 

Weight-loss success

When it comes to short term weight loss, the group of patients that received the gastric sleeve procedure showed faster and more dramatic weight loss at the one year and five-year marks. However, after 10 years, research shows weight-loss and conversion rates were comparable for both groups. Simply put, the long-term success of the gastric sleeve and of the Lap-Band procedure are about the same. 

Why is Lap-Band right for me? 

So, if the gastric sleeve and the Lap-Band have similar 10-year success rates, which is the right surgery? Choosing a bariatric procedure is a deeply personal choice that will depend greatly on your unique situation and health requirements, however the Lap-Band does offer several distinct advantages over the gastric sleeve.  


As your needs change, the Lap-Band changes with you. Via a port beneath the skin, the Lap-Band can be tightened or loosened as your body or your physical needs change over time.  This means it can even be adjusted for pregnancy.

No partial amputation

Unlike the gastric sleeve, the Lap-Band procedure doesn’t involve any cutting of the stomach or rerouting of your organs. If for any reason your Lap-Band needs to be removed, it is easily reversible.


Because the Lap-Band does not remove or reroute internal organs, it’s considered a non-malabsorptive surgery. The gastric sleeve is a malabsorptive surgery, meaning the body may struggle to get the nutrients it needs to stay healthy, risking vitamin and mineral deficiencies. While patients who receive the gastric sleeve procedure often require extensive supplement routines, the only supplement typically recommended after the Lap-Band procedure is a daily multivitamin that meets or exceeds current American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery guidelines.

Faster recovery

For patients who receive the minimally invasive Lap-Band surgery, recovery time is shorter than the gastric sleeve procedure. The procedure is typically performed in less than an hour, and you can usually return home the same day, with a shorter recovery time than more invasive bariatric procedures.

If you decide the Lap-Band is the right surgical weight-loss option for you, there are numerous surgeons across the country that are ready to help you take control of your weight loss. Visit the Lap-Band website for more information and find more articles about Lap-Band success on our blog.

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Important Lap-Band® System Safety Information

The Lap-Band System is indicated for weight reduction for patients with obesity, with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of at least 40 kg/m2 or a BMI of at least 30 kg/m2 with one or more obesity-related comorbid conditions. It is indicated for use only in adult patients who have failed more conservative weight reduction alternatives, such as supervised diet, exercise and behavior modification programs. Patients who elect to have this surgery must make the commitment to accept significant changes in their eating habits for the rest of their lives.

The Lap-Band System is not recommended for non-adult patients (patients under 18 years of age), patients with conditions that may make them poor surgical candidates or increase the risk of poor results, who are unwilling or unable to comply with the required dietary restrictions, or who currently are or may be pregnant.

The Lap-Band System is a long-term implant. Explant and replacement surgery may be required. Patients who become pregnant or severely ill, or who require more extensive nutrition may require deflation of their bands. Anti-inflammatory agents, such as aspirin, should be used with caution and may contribute to an increased risk of band erosion.

Placement of the Lap-Band System is major surgery and, as with any surgery, death can occur. Possible complications include the risks associated with the medications and methods used during surgery, the risks associated with any surgical procedure, and the patient’s ability to tolerate a foreign object implanted in the body. Most common related adverse events include: Band slippage, pouch dilation, stoma obstruction, gastroesophageal reflux, esophageal dilation, cholelithiasis, incisional infection, abdominal pain, gastroenteritis, or nausea and vomiting may occur. Reoperation may be required. Rapid weight loss may result in complications that may require additional surgery. Deflation of the band may alleviate excessively rapid weight loss or esophageal dilation.

Important: For full safety information please click here or talk with your doctor.