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Surg Endosc. 2004 Feb;18(2):198-202. Epub 2003 Dec 29.

The Lap-Band system in the United States: one surgeon's experience with 271 patients.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, San Jacinto Methodist Hospital, 4301 Garth Road, Baytown, TX 77521, USA,



The LAP-BAND system is considered an important bariatric surgery procedure in many countries and is rapidly gaining acceptance in the United States. Outcomes data emerging in the United States parallel European and Australian experience. The purpose of this study was to examine our experience with this procedure in the United States.


Between November 2000 and September 2002, 271 patients (236 women) underwent LAP-BAND system placement. The mean age of patients was 40 years (18-63); preoperative mean body weight was 125 kg (93-192). Surgeries were performed using either the two-step (pars flaccida to perigastric) or the pars flaccida technique with three (1.1%) conversions to open procedures. Mean operative time was 42 min (23-86); average hospital stay was 1 day (4 h to 7 days).


The mean body mass index (BMI) decreased from a baseline of 45.3 kg/m(2) (35-68) to 41.9 ( n = 178), 39.5 ( n = 101), 38.4 (n = 81), 36.5 (n = 72), 35.9 (n = 51), and 35.1 (n = 21) kg/m(2) at 3, 6, 9, 12, 18, and 24 months, respectively, after surgery. Mean excess weight loss was 40% at 12 months and 43% at 24 months. As patients lost weight, comorbid conditions improved. No deaths occurred, no bands had to be removed, and postoperative complications were minor: 20 (7.3%) access port problems, 18 (6.6%) gastric pouch dilatations, five (1.8%) gastric slippages, and five (1.8%) stoma obstructions. All were managed conservatively or repaired laparoscopically using the original bands. Additional complications included four cases of pneumonia and one case of pulmonary embolism. One patient required reoperation because of trocar site bleeding.


The LAP-BAND system is a safe and effective bariatric procedure leading to considerable weight loss and reduction in comorbidity.

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