Surgical Procedures for Weight Loss
Past & Present
Vertical Banded Gastroplasty ... VBG
The vertical banded gastroplasty is the third most common operation for obesity performed in the world (5% of total). In Australia, however, it is performed with much less frequency due to it's high long term revision (problem) rate of approximately 20%.The operation has been performed since the early 1980's and is one of the operations known as 'stomach stapling'.

A vertical line of staples are placed in the upper part of the stomach, closer to its inner curve. This partitions the stomach into a small upper pouch and a larger lower pouch.Because of the staples, food entering the stomach must pass through the smaller upper pouch first.At the lower end of this pouch, there is a band or mesh placed. The function of the band is to slow the food down so it stays in the upper pouch for a period of time before progressing into the larger lower pouch. This food distends the upper pouch giving the sensation of fullness with a very small amount of food. The capacity of the pouch is between 30 and 50 mls.

In Melbourne, there has been an adaptation of this performed for over twenty years. This operation, called a high gastric reduction or Modified Long Gastroplasty, has been performed well over 3000 times with good (but not spectacular) results.