Was the Gastric Band the Best Option for Gov. Chris Christie?

The gastric banding system, especially Lap-Band®, has been thrust back into the national and international spotlight with the latest news of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie undergoing a gastric banding procedure. One of the questions that swirled around his decision to place a Lap-Band® for weight loss is whether it was the right move. One criticism is that stapled procedures, such as gastric bypass or gastric sleeve, tend to offer a greater level of potential weight loss and may ultimately have a lower long-term complication rate than the band. So did he make the right decision?

Of course, the answer is that every patient has their own considerations for weight loss surgery and which procedure is best for them. In the case of Governor Christie, the benefits of the gastric band, such as being performed on an outpatient basis and having reversible and adjustable qualities may have outweighed the potential pitfalls. For others, a non-reversible procedure offering more dramatic weight loss potential may be better.

To the point of what surgical procedure is best, it is important to note that all weight loss surgery procedures can be revised.  Of course, it is best to make the right decision in the first place and follow your post-op guidelines closely. In fact, the gastric band is the easiest procedure to revise since there is no cutting of the stomach or rerouting of the small intestine. That said, it is important to note that revisional bariatric surgery comes with a higher potential for complications.

Remember, just like Governor Christie, you must make an informed decision regarding what procedure is best for your particular circumstance – there is no best procedure for everyone. As bariatric surgeons, we can recommend the procedures that may be best based on your medical profile, habits and other information we gather over the course of our consultations. However, the final decision to undergo a weight loss surgery procedure and which one that is, is a personal decision that can only be made by you with the advice of your medical team and loved ones.

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Advanced Surgical Associates is one of the first exclusively surgical groups practicing in Union County New Jersey. And that is just the first of many firsts for ASA. For over 40 years, we have pioneered breakthrough surgical patient care in North Jersey in both general and weight loss surgery. ASA also offers gastric bypass, gastric sleeve and gastric banding to those suffering from obesity in New Jersey.
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