This story discussed the increased use of gastric banding in individuals who had previously had gastric bypass surgery. While indicating that there was not a lot of data about the effectiveness or longevity of this approach for aiding in weight loss, the story missed the chance to include information about several aspects that should have been covered. By featuring anecdotal information about the short term weight loss of several individuals, it overshadowed the fact that there really is not much known about either the short term or long term risks or whether the improvement in appetite control and weight loss were observed long-term.
The story provided no information about the cost of gastric banding or how the increased time that may be needed for the procedure when conducted after gastric bypass affected the costs.
The story indicated that gastric banding may re-impose limitations on caloric intake that had initially been established with gastric bypass. While it indicated that good long-term data about the utility of banding after bypass was not available, this was overshadowed by the examples of the weight loss seen in a few individuals it detailed.
The story did mention the gastric banding following gastric bypass could be complicated by adhesion of organs to one another resulting from scarring from the first surgery. And while mentioning that this might result in a longer time needed for the surgery, there was no discussion about what ramifications there might be for the patient or how often this scenario was encountered. There was no discussion of other complication rates.
The story mentioned that there were not concrete data on the percentage of individuals who were having a second bariatric procedure for maintaining their weight loss. But instead of following up on the theme of inadequate information on long term efficacy, the story went on to use anecdotes to detail weight loss that had been achieved without reiterating that not much was known about its permanence either. The story didn’t discuss the quality of the evidence or its limitations, of which there are many.
The story did not engage in overt disease mongering.
Several clinicians were quoted as part of this story indicating that they were seeing an increased number of individuals seeking to have a second weight loss procedure because they felt gastric bypass was not sufficient to enable them to maintain their weight loss. Beyond this, the story included no expert commenting with concrete information about the risks and benefits associated with this approach to weight control.
The story failed to provide indications about other surgical and medical options available to assist individuals with weight loss and maintenance following gastric bypass.
The story did not give any indication as to whether all bariatric surgeons perform gastric banding after gastric bypass surgery or if it was a select subset.
The story indicated that the particular pattern of bariatric surgeries discussed was a relatively new phenomena and that information about long term weight control was not yet available.
Does not appear to rely on a press release.