When New York Jets head coach, Rex Ryan, stepped on a scale back in 2010 he was shocked by the number: 348 pounds. He soon underwent gastric banding (often referred to as the Lap-Band) and two years later he had dropped more than 100 pounds. Ryan says that his motivation for undergoing surgery was to be healthy enough to see his kids grow up, and then their kids grow up. And his health has improved–in addition to his substantial weight loss, Ryan has seen improvement in both his cholesterol levels and blood pressure following surgery.

Coach Ryan walks at least 45 minutes each day and feels so good that he actually has thought about running again. “I can’t remember the last time I felt that way,” he said. Rex Ryan’s weight loss inspired his twin brother, New Orleans Saints defense coordinator, Rob Ryan, to undergo the same procedure last year. Rob also weighed more than 300 pounds before the band procedure, and it was reported that he dropped 50 pounds in the first few months following surgery.

Gastric band surgery is a performed laparoscopically, meaning the surgeon makes very small incisions, instead of a large incision as you would have with an ‘open’ surgery. During the procedure, a small silicone band is placed around the top of the stomach. This creates a pouch about the size of a golf ball, which food passes through first. Because the pouch is small, patients feel full after eating a smaller amount of food and generally feel fuller for longer. No cutting or stapling is done inside the body with a band, and it is completely reversible.

You can learn more about the procedure on our website, or by scheduling a consultation with our highly experienced surgeon, Dr. Vafa Shayani, at 630-468-2545.