Bariatric Clinical Trial Gives Patients More Options

SYOSSET, NY – Alan Geiss, MD, director of the Center for Bariatric Surgical Specialties at Syosset Hospital, is the first surgeon in the United States to present findings from a clinical trial that combines implanting a Lap Band with surgery that folds the stomach to help increase patients’ weight loss, the North Shore-LIJ Health System announced today.

 This is the first clinical trial with results in the U.S. that looks at this combined bariatric approach. Similar studies have been done in Brazil and Taiwan.

 The clinical trial, which began in November of 2011, analyzed the results of 167 patients’ surgical procedures. Patients’ weight on average went from 284 pounds to 225 pounds within a year and their body mass index (BMI) dropped from 45 to 36. By comparison, a group that only had the Lap Band implanted went from 283 pounds to 243 pounds and their BMI was lowered from 46 to 39.5.

 Folding the outer curve of a patient’s stomach into a pleat, which is called plication, is new in its application to bariatric surgeries. For decades, the procedure was used on people suffering from perforated ulcers or stomach trauma. The bariatric plication allows the person’s anatomy to be preserved, which is safer and avoids complications stemming from leaks or cuts.
 “This is an evolving bariatric surgery that attempts to avoid the issues and complications that can sometimes be associated with stapling or other bariatric surgeries that alter a person’s anatomy,” Dr. Geiss said. “We are elated to be offering this kind of procedure that is providing great results for our patients.”

 The results of this clinical trial were presented at the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery’s Obesity Week conference in Atlanta on Nov. 14.
 The clinical trial is still underway as an ongoing observational study approved by the Institutional Review Board (IRB). Anyone who seeks a Lap Band consultation at the Center for Bariatric Surgical Specialties is told about the study and offered the option to participate. To be a candidate for Lap Band surgery, a person needs to have a BMI of 40 or higher or a BMI of between 35 and 39 with a significant complication from being overweight such as diabetes or hypertension. People also have to have failed previous medical and other attempts at weight loss.
 In addition to Dr. Geiss, the following other medical professionals at Syosset Hospital contributed to the clinical trial: Colin Powers, MD, chief of general surgery; June Warman, RN-CBN, post-operating room nurse; Miriam Myerson Borsch, PA-C, physician assistant in the surgery department; Heather McMullen, MD, surgical physician; Donna McPartland, RN-CBN, clinical coordinator of the bariatric services program.

 For information about bariatric surgery, contact Syosset Hospital’s Center for Bariatric Surgical Specialties at 516-496-2752.

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