Laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding (LAGB) has a high incidence of long-term complications and failures. The best procedure to handle these failures and the optimal number of stages in such cases is still controversial. The aim of this retrospective study was to compare the results of conversions of LAGB to either laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (LSG) or laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (LRYGB) in failed LAGB using a single-stage approach.
All patients who underwent conversion from LAGB to either LRYGB or LSG between January 2005 and March 2012 were included in the study. Early and late complications were reviewed. The percentage excess weight loss (%EWL) between the two groups was compared at 3, 6, 12 and 24 months of follow-up.
Fifty-nine patients, 11 men and 48 women, were included in the study. The most frequent indication was insufficient weight loss or weight regain (non-responders group), in 44 patients (75 per cent); 15 patients had a revision for complicated LAGB. The early complication rate in the non-responders group was 7 per cent (3 of 44 patients), compared with 13 per cent (2 of 15) in the complicated LAGB group. Mean(s.d.) %EWL in the non-responders group was 55(22) per cent in patients converted to LRYGB and 28(25) in those converted to LSG (P = 0·001).
LRYGB and LSG are both safe and feasible options for failed or complicated LAGB. In the non-responders group, %EWL was superior for conversion to LRYGB. The surgical morbidity rate was highest in patients having revision for band complications.