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Obes Surg. 2008 May;18(5):578-82. doi: 10.1007/s11695-007-9341-6.

Preoperative upper gastrointestinal testing can help predicting long-term outcome after gastric banding for morbid obesity.

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Department of Surgery, Hôpital du Chablais, Aigle-Monthey, 1860 Aigle, Switzerland.



Gastric banding (GB) is one of the most popular bariatric procedures for morbid obesity. Apart from causing weight loss by alimentary restriction, it can interfere with functions of the esophagus and upper stomach. The aim of this study was to evaluate if the results of extensive preoperative upper GI testing were correlated with long-term outcome and complications after GB.


Using a prospectively maintained computerized database including all the patients undergoing bariatric operations in both our hospitals, we performed a retrospective analysis of the patients who underwent complete upper gastrointestinal (GI) testing (endoscopy, pH monitoring, and manometry) before GB.


One hundred thirty-four patients underwent complete testing before GB. Abnormal pH monitoring (increased total reflux time, increased diurnal reflux time, increased number of reflux episodes) predicted the development of complications and especially pouch dilatation and food intolerance. The mean De Meester score was higher among patients who developed complications than in the remaining ones (25.4 vs 17.7, P=0.03). High lower esophageal sphincter pressure also predicted progressive long-term food intolerance. Endoscopic findings were not predictive of the long-term outcome.


There is some association between the function of the upper digestive tract and long-term complications after gastric banding. Abnormal pH monitoring predicts overall long-term complications, especially food intolerance with or without reflux, and pouch dilatation, and a high lower esophageal sphincter pressure predicts long-term food intolerance. Extended upper gastrointestinal testing with endoscopy, 24-h pH monitoring, and esophageal manometry is probably worthwhile in selecting patients for gastric banding.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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