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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.

The Latest

Important Lap-Band® System Safety Information

The ReShape Lap-Band Systems are approved for adults with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 40 or higher, or a BMI of at least 30 with health conditions related to obesity, who have not seen success with other weight loss methods, like supervised diet, exercise, and behavior modification programs. Choosing this surgery means committing to changes in eating habits for the long term.

The Lap-Band procedure is not approved for individuals under 18 yo, those with conditions that may make them poor surgical candidates or lead to poor results, such as inflammatory or cardiopulmonary diseases, problems with the stomach and digestion, symptoms or family history of autoimmune disease, scarring of the liver, individuals unable or unwilling to follow the necessary dietary restrictions, individuals with alcohol or drug addictions, or those currently pregnant. Individuals who become pregnant after band placement may require deflation of their bands.

The ReShape Lap-Band Systems, a long-term tool, may need to be adjusted if you get pregnant, sick, or malnourished. Be careful with anti-inflammatory drugs as they could make the band wear away. Like any surgery, placement of the Lap-Band may have complications such as risks from drugs and methods used, general surgery risks, how well your body handles a foreign object, or in rare cases, risk of death.

As with any surgical procedure, there are risks associated with metabolic and bariatric surgery that you and your doctor should discuss. Potential risks associated with the Lap-Band include nausea, vomiting, heartburn, stomach blockage, constipation, swallowing difficulty, diarrhea, abnormal stools, abdominal pain, weakness, incision pain, infection, fever, hernia, chest pain, band movement, stomach pouch expansion, unusual healing, pain at the port site, port movement, and/or hair loss. Additional surgery might be needed. Losing weight quickly could lead to complications requiring more surgery. 

Talk to your doctor, and/or visit our website at for more information on its benefits and risks.