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One of newly published studies evaluated Lap-Band device in 500 morbidly obese French patients. Researcher Franck Zinzindohoue, MD, and colleagues reported a 53% excess weight loss at two years, with 10% of patients having to have second operations due to complications. No deaths were reported among patients. The outcomes were much better than those reported in a recent study finding that more than half of patients abandoned band in favor of gastric bypass surgery.
The authors attribute their good outcome to a procedure they developed to reduce incidence of band slippage, one of most common complications of gastric banding.
Some Patients Are Unhappy Because They Did Not Loose As Much Weight As They Wanted
Still, in an accompanying editorial, weight loss surgeon John M. Kellum, MD, says surgeons in America may want to think twice before recommending gastric band surgery over gastric bypass. He no longer performs gastric banding, and says most of his patients who had banding procedure were unhappy with it because they did not lose as much weight as they had hoped to.
"Some of my patients actually gained weight, which never happens with gastric bypass," he tells WebMD. "We were also troubled by fairly high number of patients who had complications with band." Kellum says a newer type of band from Sweden may be safer for patients than Lap-Band, but it has not been studied in U.S.
In second new study, authors claimed a lower rate of band erosion and slippage. But procedure is not recommended for all patients, especially heaviest, which Kellum says could restrict its usefulness among American patients.
"American patients tend to be heavier than those in Europe, and heavier patient higher likelihood that complications will occur," he says.
Jennifer Secrist, who now weighs 140 pounds and is a size 6, says she knows of a few gastric band patients, or "bandsters," who have had trouble losing weight with procedure. But she would not hesitate to recommend it to anyone whose health is jeopardized by morbid obesity. She publishes a web journal of her process to inspire others.
"I want people to know there are alternatives to being heavy," she says. "This has done so much for me. I can't begin to describe it."
About The Author
---------------- Michael Lewis has been collecting articles and information on Weight Loss and HGH (Human Growth Hormone and related health benefits. He has created and edits numerous web sites about this subject. Michael is a staff writer for www.ageforce.com