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Vertical gastrectomy for morbid obesity in 216 patients: report of two-year results.

Surgical Endoscopy 2007 October
BACKGROUND: The vertical gastrectomy (VG) is the restrictive part of the technically difficult biliopancreatic diversion with duodenal switch operation (DS). The VG was originally conceived of as an independent operation-the first stage of a two-stage DS that would reduce mortality and morbidity in the high-risk superobese because of a shorter operating time and no anastomoses. This article presents two-year data after VG.

METHODS: Laparoscopic VG was performed in a nonrandomized fashion in obese patients that met the NIH criteria for bariatric surgery. By using 5-7 firings of 45-60-mm linear 3.5-mm GI staplers along a 32-Fr bougie, a greater-curvature gastrectomy is performed and a 60-80-ml gastric tube is created. VG was compared to adjustable Lap-Band placement, Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RGB), and DS.

RESULTS: Between November 2002 and August 2005, 216 patients underwent VG. The mean age was 44.7 years (range = 16-64) and 173 (80%) were female. The mean preoperative weight and body mass index (BMI) was 302 +/- 77 lbs and 49 +/- 11 kg/m2, respectively. Of the 216 patients, 5 (2.3%) had a BMI > 80 kg/m2, 6 (2.8%) had a BMI of 70-80 kg/m(2), and 25 (11.6%) had a BMI of 60-70 kg/m2. The mean operative time was 66 +/- 11 min (range = 45-180) and the mean length of hospital stay was 1.9 +/- 1.2 days. Complications occurred in 20 (6.3%) patients (vs. 7.1% after Lap-Band). Leaks occurred in 3 (1.4%) VG patients, reoperations were performed in 6 (2.8%), and no conversions to open or deaths occurred. Weight loss on par with the DS and RGB was achieved with just the VG alone.

CONCLUSION: The VG operation is able to achieve significant weight loss comparable to the RGB and DS operations but with the low morbidity profile similar to that of Lap-Band placement.

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