Sunday, August 17, 2008

Reducing Internal Hernias After Laparoscopic Bypass Surgery

Bariatric surgery has been shown to be a more effective treatment for long term weight loss than diet, exercise or lifestyle modification. And, more and more, laparoscopic bariatric surgery is being used for weight loss treatment instead of open bariatric surgery.

However, as we mentioned in our August 10, 2008 blog post, a Mayo Clinic article reported that some complications were higher for laparoscopic bariatric surgery than for open bariatric surgery. Occurrences of internal hernias, after laparoscopic bypass surgery, are among these complications. And we indicated in the blog post that the potential for a high number of complications could be a threat to minimally invasive bariatric surgery.

This threat could be lessened, however, if a solution to the hernia problem could be found. According to research done at the University of Rochester, a material, currently used to reduce staple-line bleeding during gastric bypass surgery, may be used to reduce the occurrences of associated internal hernias.

The material is called bioabsorbable glycolide copolymer staple-line reinforcement (SLR). Patients who received additional operations after laparoscopic bypass surgery, where SLR had been used, experienced a reduction in hernias compared to those patients where SLR was not used.

We believe this to be important research, since mitigating the complications associated with laparoscopic bariatric surgery is good for the bariatric industry. Of course more research needs to me done. But if additional research confirms the preliminary results, the use of SLR will enhance the viability of minimally invasive bariatric surgery.


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