Lap Band vs. Realize Band-----
on 4/16/08 3:00 am
My surgery date is May 2nd. My doctor is giving me a choice between "Lap Band" & "Realize Band". I've read about both. To me there are only minor differences. Any suggestions/comments on either? Any help would be great. I guess I was just wanting my doctor to make the decision for me... Thanks
I thought the main selling point of the Realize Band is the fact that when you lose weight that the port has a low profile and will not stick up very high as opposed to some of the other bands which are marketed. Marti in San Jose
The info below was posted by Dr. Brad Watkins from Synchrony Health, Cincinnati, OH on lapbandtalk.com on 12/12/07. Dr. Watkins is also a member of the Advisory Board for ObesityHelp.com.
Differences between REALIZE and ALLERGAN bands:
Clinical outcomes (slip rate, erosion rate, weight loss, etc) are very similar between the two bands. The Allergan band is the original band (Allergan bought the Inamed band company which bought Bioenterics company - these are the old names of the same band)
Surgically, there are subtle differences such as:
The Allergan band comes in many sizes, REALIZE band is one size.
Allergan has two port sizes; REALIZE is one port size.
Allergan ports are stitched to the muscle fascia (the tough white stuff on the outside of the muscle); REALIZE port has neat technology that attaches itself to the muscle fascia and may have slightly less port pain the first few days after surgery. The REALIZE ports have a neat tool that places the port and secures it with a handheld instrument making it really easy on the surgeon. (Don't tell anyone but they could teach monkeys to do this stuff.)
Allergan band tubing has little arrows printed on it pointing the surgeon to the tab end of the tubing which is a nice feature in the operating room.
Allergan ports are smaller around (circumference) and taller - perhaps easier to palpate for fills.
REALIZE ports are bigger around and less prominent. Think small stack of silver dollars versus taller stack of quarters to create the mental image.
Allergan tubing is closer to the septum (the area that you aim for with the needle for adjustments/fills) and perhaps more susceptible to needle sticks requiring port replacement.
REALIZE ports have the septum farther away from the tubing - the tubing is a little more protected.
Both bands are now easier to unbuckle in the event a surgeon has to reposition the band.
The REALIZE band comes with a neat instrument that helps to pass the band around the upper stomach.
The Allergan AP bands have "pillows" in the inflatable portion of the inner balloon that prevents balloon-to-balloon contact. The REALIZE band does have balloon-to-balloon contact. Some people think that this contact may cause issues years later but long-term studies have not shown this to be the case.
I hope this information is helpful. Good luck on your journey!
THE REALIZE BAND IS TO NEW HOW CAN ANY ONE SAY WHAT THE LONG TERM STUDIES REALLY ARE? BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU READ A LOT OF THIS STUFF IS B.S. ON THESE SO CALLED FORUMS. A LOT OF MISLEADING INFO - READERS SHOULD BEWARE AND NOT TAKE FORUMS OF ANY SURGICAL PROCEDURE TO BE FACTUAL - FDA WARNS OF MAKING ILLEGAL COMMENTS OF ANY WEIGHT LOSS PRODUCTS MAKING CLAIMS SUCH AS THESE!
Actually, isn't the Realize band another name for the Swedish band that has been in use in Europe now for years with success?
At any rate, I have the Realize band and so far am doing great with it.
Oh and and all caps on the internet equals shouting...
Gentlemen, I wash my hands of this weirdness.