Alternative to Gastric
Bypass Surgery Sought - Researchers Looking for the Gold Standard Plan
in Diet and Fitness Programs
March 9th 2006
Researchers are looking for a safe alternative to gastric bypass
surgery, in a attempt to find a “gold standard” treatment. Nearly
170,000 patients underwent gastric bypass surgery in 2005 and spent an
estimated 4.5 billion dollars on the procedure. This is up 1000 percent
from a decade early.
There have been concerns associated with the procedure, and most doctors
look at operating as the last resort. According to the Anne Collins
website “About 10-20 percent of patients undergoing stomach bypass
require follow-up operations to correct complications, the most common
complaints being abdominal hernias.”
Most people that consider gastric bypass surgery have failed other
weight loss plans and do turn to the procedure as a last resort.
According to an NBC News Story, BlueCross and BlueShield of Western New
York sought the $5 million study by the University at Buffalo, after
being unable to find a model treatment for the severely obese, defined
as having a body mass index of greater than 40.
The insurance companies have begun recruiting participants from their
members. The study will consist of 4 groups of participants, with two
groups being allowed to consume a maximum of 800 calories per day. Most
of the calories will come from a packaged, nutritionally dense powder to
be mixed into shakes, soups and other foods.
Other groups will consume 1,200 to 1,500 calories a day. Half of the
participants will take an FDA-approved appetite suppressant or
fat-blocker while the other half will receive no medication. All of the
participants will receive behavior modification training, including an
eventual walk of up to 3 miles daily.
Many severely obese people suffer other complications including diabetes
and heart disease. Some researchers have called obesity “the terror
within”, and with the risks of gastric bypass surgery insurance
companies are always looking for alternatives.