A new study added to the evidence that Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding (Lap-Band) is safe and effective for people with less severe obesity (BMI 30-39.9), with weight loss and  improvement in obesity-related conditions through at least 2 years. Led by Dr. Robert Michaelson, bariatric surgeon at Northwest Weight Loss Surgery, the study involved 149 patients: 90 percent were female, with average BMI of 35. One year after undergoing Lap-Band surgery, nearly 85 percent of the study group achieved at least 30 percent excess weight loss (EWL), with an average EWL of 65 percent. Two thirds of the patients were no longer obese (BMI<30)—a significant accomplishment. Patients who had obesity-related health conditions prior to surgery saw significant improvement at one year, with improvement in 64 percent of those with abnormal cholesterol levels,  60 percent of those with hypertension, and 86 percent of those with diabetes. Moreover, the study found that each additional 10 percent weight loss at Year 2 was associated with a decrease in triglycerides by 13.7mg/dL, systolic blood pressure by 3.3mmHg and fasting glucose by 3.5mg/dL. Overall, side effects reported were mild to moderate and were resolved within a month.

Lead study author, Dr. Michaelson, said that the findings “convinced the FDA that early intervention in the continuum of obesity is the right thing to do: Treat before people go on to develop serious conditions related to obesity. The next step is to get the private insurers and Medicare, who continue to rely on guidelines established in 1991, to review the incontrovertible literature, take down the barriers to the necessary treatment for this disease, and offer the hope of a cure to 27 million Americans affected by obesity,” he concluded.

At the Bariatric Institute of Greater Chicago, we specialize in Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding. You can learn more about the Lap-band and whether it may be a good weight loss option for you by attending one of our free informational seminars, or scheduling a consultation with Dr. Vafa Shayani at 630-468-2545.