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Weight loss surgery safe and effective for an expanded group of patients
Date:5/1/2013

The LAP-BAND weight loss procedure is safe and effective in an expanded group of patients, not just in people who are morbidly obese. This conclusion is reported in a new study published in the scientific journal Obesity. The findings indicate that the procedure may help to intervene before obesity becomes life threatening to patients.

In 2001 the LAP-BAND adjustable gastric banding system (LAGB) was approved by the FDA as weight loss procedure for patients with a body mass index (BMI) of 40 kg/m2 or higher and for patients with a BMI of at least 35 with an obesity-related condition, such as diabetes or hypertension. (A person with a BMI of 30 or higher is considered obese.) During the procedure, a surgeon makes small incisions in the patient's abdomen and places an adjustable band around the upper part of the stomach. The newly created upper pouch allows the patient to eat only small amounts of food at a time, and it provides prolonged appetite suppression.

To assess the safety and effectiveness of LAGB in an expanded group of patients, Robert Michaelson, MD, PhD, FACS, of Northwest Weight Loss Surgery in Everett, Washington, and his colleagues recruited 149 individuals with a BMI of 35 to 39.9 without an additional condition, or a BMI of 30 to 34.9 with at least one obesity-related condition.

"Patients in our study had been obese for an average of 17 years," said Dr. Michaelson. "They tried numerous other weight loss methods and finally reached out for surgical treatment when they were weary of the repetitive failures at maintaining weight loss."

One year after undergoing the procedure, 84.6% of patients achieved at least a 30 percent loss in excess body weight, with an average excess weight loss of 65 percent. A total of 66.4 percent of patients were no longer obese. Obesity-related conditions that were present at the time of surgery improved for many patients, including 64.4 percent of patients who had high cholest
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Contact: Amy Molnar
sciencenewsroom@wiley.com
Wiley
Source:Eurekalert

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