New Lap Band Data Shows Long Term Success

March 14, 2013

Laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding (Lap-Band) results in significant long-term weight loss, according to the findings of a new landmark study from Australia. With up to 15 years of post-surgery data, the study is the longest follow-up study on Lap-Band to-date. A key finding is that patients maintained an average weight loss of about 57 pounds - nearly half of their excess weight--for more than ten years after their procedure. For patients who received gastric banding 15 or more years ago, patients maintained a weight loss of more than 47 percent of their excess weight.

The results also highlight how gastric banding has improved since its first introduction in the 1990's. Forty percent of patients who received surgery in the early years needed revisional surgery for pouch enlargement or band slippage. Just 7 percent of patients who underwent surgery from 2006 onward needed revisonal surgery. In total, 5.6 percent of patients had their band removed during the study period-- 9.9 percent in early years and down to just 2.2 percent in patients receiving surgery in 2006 or later. Also of interest, patients who required revisional surgery shed as much weight in the long-term as those who didn't require further surgery. The study was recently published in the Annals of Surgery.

NYU Langone's expert weight loss surgeon, Dr George Fielding, was interviewed about the study. He has a unique understanding of the benefits of the Lap Band, as he underwent the procedure years ago. "This is the largest long term follow up study on the lap band, by the surgeon from Australia who has done more than anyone to explain the band's benefits over the last 15 years. The study author, Dr. Paul O'Brien, did my own band 13 years ago, and my weight is stable. I've lost 110lbs. The most important part of this study is the demonstration of reduction in need for reoperation over the last few years," he said. Dr David Voellinger agreed saying, "This sub-analysis by timeline is particularly important as it shows the improvements made over time in both the device and in surgical technique. It also very clearly shows the importance of a dedicated, multi-disciplinary program with understanding of band physiology to obtain lasting success with the Lap-Band."

Gastric banding is considered the safest form of bariatric surgery, with a rapid recovery time. It is also the least invasive operation of all the weight loss surgeries available, since there is no cutting or re-connecting of stomach or intestines. You can learn more about the Lap-Band here, or by attending one of our free information sessions.