Estimates suggest that in the UK at the moment there are about one and a half million
people who would benefit from some form weight loss surgery. On the
best estimates only about one in two hundred are ever going to get it. One of the
reasons for that is that we have a strong bias toward
gastric bypass rather than gastric bands, in fact the
overwhelming majority procedures in this country are bypass rather, than bands. My view is on the other hand that the band actually should be the first
choice procedure and here are the reasons why, one is it’s by far the safest procedure of that there is no doubt. It can be performed on a day case basis it doesn’t require an in hospital stay and in
the USA at the moment, the majority of bands are done as day cases. Three – it will have important effects in reducing long-term health risks and the economic arguments to this are overwhelming, and obviously because of all those reasons you could do far more bands than you could do Bypass. The argument for Bypass, most often used by surgeons is that it gives long-term weight loss and you
don’t need follow-up nothing could be further from the truth.
You need follow up with Bypass in exactly the same way as you as you need it with bands. The other thing of course is that in the case of Bypass one of the important long-term
complications is vitamin and mineral malabsorption which you clearly don’t see in the case is bands. So I would like to
see a much greater emphasis placed on offering Bands to a greater number people. It’s the safest procedure it can be done as a day case and the
long-term outcomes you could argue are almost as good as Bypass.