Some time ago, a student of mine (a recent success story!) told me that one of her friends was considering getting weight loss surgery (the Lap Band) to lose a lot of weight.
And an interesting situation came up: right as the student joined my program, her friend got the surgery.
But six months later, here’s how it panned out:
Her friend lost the 70 pounds she wanted (from the surgery).
… And then gained 100 pounds after (and regretted the $10,000 she spent on it).
While my student finally got her pre-pregnancy weight back she hadn’t seen in 10 years.
Having said that – what really ARE the risks of getting weight loss surgery? In today’s video we’ll talk about them.
The Real Risks of Weight Loss Surgery
Here’s What The Researchers Found
In the first study, 41 patients (93% were female) were included to assess the effects (in this case, also the side effects) of lap band surgery.
Out of the patients here, 76% suffered some kind of complication (infections, leaks, etc) and ten wanted their band removed.
But here’s what’s funny: 5 (12%) maintained their weight, but all the others gained weight.
Yes, you read that right.
After removal of the band, the mean BMI was 36.7 versus 29.4, so the BMI substantially increased (and 36 is very high for a person).
73% would not agree to gastric banding again, and the researchers concluded that in 66% of cases, this was a failure.
I don’t know about you, but those stats don’t sound too good to me.
Study #2: Not Enough Weight Lost?
In the second study here, 37 patients had lap band surgery, and then they were followed up on for four years.
The devices were removed in 15 (41%) patients some time during that period due to complications.
The most common reason for removal was inadequate weight loss in the presence of a functioning band.
The primary reasons for removal in others were infection, leakage from the inflatable silicone ring causing inadequate weight loss, or band slippage.
Overall, only four patients achieved a body-mass index of less than 35 and/or at least a 50% reduction in excess weight.
So in this second study, the most common reason for removal was “not enough weight lost” – including the complications you read here.
What’s Going On Here?
So let’s look at the facts:
– This stuff isn’t necessarily as effective as it’s supposed to be
– There’s a VERY high rate of complications
– One study even found that inadequate weight loss was a reason for removing the band early
– And 3/4 wouldn’t ever do it again or recommend it
… Am I missing something here?
I know it’s human nature for us to want quick fixes, and there are definitely valid medical reasons for wanting this surgery, but hopefully this’ll help some people reconsider.
If we focus on a QUICK WIN with no work…usually we LOSE quickly too.
And what about my student?
Well, you be the judge:
Your Tiny Habit For Today
Remember… if it sounds like a gimmick, it probably is!
What’s scary is that it’s approved by the FDA as a treatment for morbid obesity (despite the research arguing the contrary here).
But there’s a MUCH deeper, underlying issue here. With weight, there’s always a story behind it. In other words, is the surgery (or any pill for that matter) going to find the ROOT cause of the problem?
Is it emotional eating?
Is it working too much and stressing out too much?
Is it some kind of belief or story we tell ourselves internally causing sabotage?
Was it abuse as a child, or something our parents or grandparents told us or had us believe?
What’s the real, underlying cause? If we don’t find that, nothing works. So I want to challenge you here to really spend time thinking about the story behind the story – what’s not being said here? What’s the real origin? And is surgery (or any other pill or plan) going to fix the problem long term without any other work?
Thoughts? Please share them below.
Sources: Research #1: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19680730 | http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1421324/