While adjustable gastric banding has been used for the treatment of obesity since the early 1980s, it was not until 2001 that the FDA approved the LAP-BAND in the US. Since then, a number of short-term studies have repeatedly proven the excellent weight loss results of this most commonly performed bariatric surgical procedure worldwide.
What is the long-term weight loss of gastric-band patients? Does the band keep the weight off several years after the surgery?
Long Term Effect of Lap Band on Weight Loss
The first study to assess the long-term efficacy of LAGB in a large cohort of patients in the US–a country were 33% of adults are obese and 5% are morbidly obese–was published in June 2010. The LAP-BAND System was inserted in these patients at New York University Medical Center between 2000 and 2008.
Of the 2,909 patients analyzed, 68% were women and 32% were men, and weighed on average 282 lbs before the surgery. The procedure lasted 44 minutes and patients stayed on average one day in the hospital. After the lap bad surgery, the patients were followed up annually and their weight was recorded.
Average Weight Loss 6 Years After Lap Band
Six years after the Lap Band surgery, patients lost on average approximately 50% of their excess weight. What does that mean? If a man weighs 282lbs before the operation but his ideal weight is 182lbs, then his excess weight is 100lbs. After losing 50% of his excess this man now weighs 232 lbs.
During the 6-year period analyzed,
- 82% of the patients lost more than 20% of their excess weight
- 17% of the patients lost less than 20% of their excess weight
- 1% of the patients did not lose any weight at all.
As shown in the graph, the average excess weight loss was
- 37.6% at 1 year
- 50.9% at 2 years
- 53.0% at 3 years
- 51.5% at 4 years
- 47.5% at 5 years
- 47.0% at 6 years
Notice that weight loss was maintained for the duration of the 6-year follow-up. The maximum weight loss occurred 2-3 years after the surgery. At 6 years, patients had lost on average almost half of their excess weight.
How Much Weight Do You Lose With the Lap Band?
According to scientific reports, people who have undergone the band procedure lose 42-62% of their excess weight within the first 3 years after the surgery.
Biagini and colleagues, who analyzed 591 gastric band patients, reported excess weight loss of up to 83% at 10 years, but the sample was small and therefore not very representative.
In a French study of 1,180 patients, Dargent found that the gastric band produced 50% excess weight loss at 7 years.
Vertruyen, who evaluated the effect of Lap Band System at 7 years follow-up on 543 patients, found a 52% excess weight loss.
The June 2010 study I mentioned above, analyzed the largest ever sample of lap band patients (2,909). The average patient experienced 50% excess weight loss at 6 years.
The study, authored by Katie Weichman and colleagues and published in the journal Surgical Endoscopy, concluded:
“In the United States, LAGB can result in significant weight loss for the morbidly obese that is sustained as long as 6 years.”