Short-Term Results of Lap Band Surgery for Pediatric Patients — Dr. Christine Ren-Fielding

Study Shows Favorable Outcomes for Bariatric Surgery in Young Patients  

There has been an epidemic of obesity in the adolescent population of the US in recent years. Although some teenagers are able to sustain weight loss through diet and exercise, most are not.  The majority of obese teenagers become obese adults. Until recently, gastric bypass surgery has been one of the main bariatric surgery options for adolescents. Here, Dr. Christine Ren-Fielding and colleagues looked at the short term outcomes of lap band surgery for adolescents. Not only is this procedure less invasive, but it seems to be very effective, too. These data suggest it is an excellent option for adolescents with morbid obesity.

Methods and Results

This study included adolescents who underwent lap band surgery at NYU Langone Medical Center between Sept 2001 and 2007.  All were between the ages of 13-17.  41 patients were female and 12 were male.  All patients met the National Institutes of Health’s eligibility requirements for bariatric surgery.

After surgery, each patient in the study adhered to a strict liquid diet for two weeks. They met with the medical team for follow-up care two weeks after surgery and then monthly for twelve months.  In addition to weight loss, the medical team monitored eating patterns and appetite. They also monitored any issues that arose (such as difficulty swallowing) and adjusted the lap band accordingly.

The mean age of the 53 patients included in the study was 15.9.  The percentage of excess weight lost was 37.5 at six months and 62 at one year.  None of the patients had complications during or after bariatric surgery.

Dr. Christine Ren-Fielding’s Conclusions Regarding Lap Band Surgery for Young Patients

These data suggest that this surgery is an excellent option for obese adolescents. Although gastric bypass surgery has been more common in the past, gastric banding  is less invasive and is also reversible. This short term study also demonstrates that lap band surgery is safe and effective for young patients.  In conclusion, this bariatric surgery procedure is a promising option for teenagers struggling with obesity.

For More Information

Are you considering a medical intervention for weight loss? Please contact Dr. Christine Ren-Fielding at the NYU Langone Weight Management Program.


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