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Ann Surg. 1999 Dec;230(6):800-5; discussion 805-7.

Open versus laparoscopic adjustable silicone gastric banding: a prospective randomized trial for treatment of morbid obesity.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.



To perform the first prospective trial of laparoscopic versus open adjustable silicone gastric banding (ASGB) in patients with morbid obesity.


Vertical banded gastroplasty has been used for many years to treat morbid obesity, but the size of the stoma has remained a source of failure after the procedure. ASGB has the advantages of maintaining gastric integrity and the potential for readjustment of the band, if needed. It has been suggested that laparoscopic ASGB, recently introduced to reduce postoperative complications and hospital stay, has a negative impact on outcome.


Fifty patients with morbid obesity of >5 years' duration and a body-mass index (BMI) > 40 kg/m2 were randomized to undergo laparoscopic or open ASGB. The difficulty of the procedure, surgical time, postoperative complications, and hospital stay were assessed. Stoma adjustments, long-term complications, readmissions, weight loss, and BMI were determined.


All procedures were successfully carried out. Of 25 patients assigned to laparoscopic ASGB, 2 were converted to an open procedure. Surgical time was significantly longer for laparoscopic ASGB (150 minutes vs. 76 minutes for open ASGB). There was no difference in complications. Mean hospital stay was 5.9 days for the laparoscopic procedure versus 7.2 days for open ASGB (p < 0.05). The total number of readmissions (6 vs. 15) and overall hospital stay in the first year (7.8 vs. 11.8 days) were lower after laparoscopic ASGB (p < 0.05). Weight and BMI were reduced significantly in both groups, but there was no difference between the groups.


Laparoscopic and open ASGB were equally effective in terms of early (first-year) weight loss, reduction of BMI, and postoperative complications. The laparoscopic procedure was associated with a shorter initial hospital stay and fewer readmissions during follow-up and is therefore the preferred treatment in morbidly obese patients undergoing ASGB.

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