It’s the procedure that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie recently chose to assist his efforts in losing weight, and it’s the option that Lovell opted for as well.
“With the lap band, you have some control over the adjustment,” she said. “When you start to lose weight, the band can get a little looser, so you go in and get it adjusted. If it gets too tight, you can have it adjusted as well.”
Lovell had the procedure done three years ago and was immediately impressed with how quickly it changed her life.
“I was very nervous about the surgery,” she said. “When I met Dr. Hill, I told him to be very careful and to treat my body well. He said, ‘Don’t worry; I’ll take care of you,’ and it went very well. He really did follow through (with his promise).”
Lovell has lost 100 pounds since the procedure, but even more importantly, she has found the energy that had abandoned her when she was excessively overweight.
“Shortly after the procedure, I ran in a 5K,” she said. “I’ve joined the women’s roller-derby team, and I’m skating with them now. In general, I have much more energy and am more active in my lifestyle.”
She is also going to be married later this summer, she added, noting that her fiancé has been with her throughout the weight-loss process.
Although the lap band has the lowest risk of the four procedures, it is no longer the No. 1 choice for people moving toward bariatric surgery, Hill noted.
“It used to be that about half of the procedures we performed were lap bands (around 2005),” he said. “Now, they’re about 20 percent of the overall procedures.”
Sometimes, one of the other procedures may have advantages in correcting other medical problems such as diabetes while reducing weight, Hill added.