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Surgical Intervention to Solve Obesity and Related Problems

According to the researchers at Monash University Medical School in Melbourne, Australia, it was found that adjustable gastric banding shows effective results against obesity than a very low-calorie diet.// The surgical procedure consists of a placing a band around the top of stomach to create a feeling of fullness in patients who are extremely obese. This could be practiced for those who have serious medical conditions, such as type 2 diabetes. The researchers recruited 80 patients who were on average 52 pounds over a healthy weight.

About 50% of them underwent the laparoscopic surgery and others were put on a very-low-calorie diet (500 calories a day) with liquid meal replacements, prescription weight-loss medication and behavioral therapies. The study was published in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine. It was found that after 6 months both the set of patients lost an average of 14% of their starting weight. After two years the gastric band patients lost roughly 45 pounds. There was marked improvement in their health and quality of life. At the two years they had regained much of their lost weight but had lost about 12 pounds of excess weight.

Paul O'Brien, director of the university's Centre for Obesity Research and Education said that gastric band patients are continuing to maintain their weight loss.

The surgery costs about $14,000 to $18,000 in the USA. There is another type of surgery which is slightly modifies called the gastric bypass. In this the stomach is made smaller and the other adjoining organs are rearranged. Neil Hutcher, president of the American Society for Bariatric Surgery and a surgeon in Richmond, VA said that many surgeons in the USA use gastric bypass because bypass patients lose more weight overall and lose it faster.


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