TODAY   |  May 07, 2013

Chris Christie reveals he underwent Lap-Band surgery

The New Jersey governor says he agreed to undergo Lap-Band surgery when he turned 50 last September at the request of his family and friends. NBC’s Dr. Nancy Snyderman reports.

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>>> just this morning, new jersey's governor chris christie is revealing that he has undergone lap band surgery . his weight has been an issue for the prominent republican for some time, and governor christie decided that the time was right to do something about it. do nancy snyderman is nbc's chief medical editor. nancy, good morning to you.

>> hey, matt.

>> hearing governor christie had the surgery over the president's day holiday weekend, just two months ago. let's start with the surgery, lap band surgery versus gastric bypass .

>> not as severe, literally a band that goes around the stomach and squeezes it so the pouch of the stomach is smaller, you eat less, feel fuller sooner and your weight should drop.

>> who is the perfect candidate for this?

>> he is the candidate. over 100 pounds to lose, a bmi over 40. he always said he's the healthiest fat guy around, no high blood pressure , no diabetes. we do know if you do have high blood pressure or diabetes you can get off your medications pretty soon after, so this surgery should prevent him from getting those illnesses.

>> i spoke to governor christie on the phone. he had this on a friday and was back at work with a very tough schedule on the tuesday afterwards.

>> not a shock.

>> complications, he said to me this morning, he hasn't had any. what would they be, and how soon would they arrive?

>> unlike gastric bypass surgery where there can be all kinds of digestive problems and changes in how you can tolerate food, the biggest problem here is sometimes people don't lose weight , but he's the perfect candidate psychologically also. he's strong willed, he's determined, he listens, so he will have a very concrete recovery plan with psychologists, nurses, dieticians, et cetera . i think he's going to do extraordinarily well.

>> what could he expect under the best scenario, how much weight could he lose?

>> 100 pounds, get down to fighting weight. i've said for a long time that governor christie cannot do this on his own. he's not the kind of person, it's not will. it's just that his metabolic rate, how he's built, you can't just diet this off. you can't just exercise it off, and with his crazy schedule there probably isn't enough time to do the kinds of things, you know, that you and i sort of talk about all the time.

>> he still does have to diet and exercise. this is not a cure-all.

>> he has to be the model patient, and that means eating less, exercising and eating the right foods. you can't have a lap band and live on chocolate milk shakes and consider this a success. he'll have to be a good guy, but i think he'll take this very seriously, and i think he'll do extraordinarily well. we wish him well.