Center for Adolescent Bariatric Surgery performs 100th LAGB procedure

February 14, 2016

All potential surgical candidates undergo a comprehensive assessment by a team that includes a pediatrician, a pediatric endocrinologist, a gastroenterologist, a pulmonologist, a psychiatrist, an exercise physiologist, a nutritionist, a bariatric surgeon, an anesthesiologist, and a pediatric nurse practitioner. Before they can be considered candidates for LAGB, patients must complete a program of thorough screening and comply with rigorous weight-loss education and therapy.

Although LAGB is showing promise for helping morbidly obese youngsters lose weight, it should not be thought of as a magic bullet but rather another tool in the arsenal.

"Our initial numbers show that about a year after surgery, most of our patients have lost about one-third of their excess body weight. We have a few patients who have even lost 100 percent of their excess weight after two years," Dr. Zitsman says. "But even with surgery, the patient and his or her family still have to make a real commitment to changing what the youngster eats and to making certain lifestyle changes."

Recently, researchers from the Center for Adolescent Bariatric Surgery found that obese adolescents who had undergone LAGB showed improvement in metabolic syndrome. This syndrome includes a number of risk factors -- high blood pressure; low levels of HDL or good cholesterol; excessive abdominal fat; and elevated levels of blood sugar, C-reactive protein and triglycerides -- that increase the chances of developing cardiovascular disease or diabetes later in life. The single biggest risk factor is obesity; metabolic syndrome usually improves when a person loses weight.

"With the rise of adolescent obesity in the U.S. to nearly 20 percent and with all the complications that come from this condition, understanding the role for banding surgery in adolescents is critical," Dr. Zitsman says.

SOURCE The Center for Adolescent Bariatric Surgery