Converting Vertical Banded Gastroplasty to a Lesser Curvature Gastric Bypass: Technical Considerations

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Vertical banded gastroplasty (VBG) is occasionally followed by poor weight loss or complications requiring reoperation. Several studies have analyzed the morbidity and mortality associated with conversions of VBG to gastric bypass, but few have described the actual technique. The most frequent complications related to this type of reoperation are gastrointestinal leaks. Materials and


The authors analyzed 60 consecutive conversions from VBG to lesser curvature gastric bypass, performed on 60 patients. The cases were analyzed for surgical technique, complications and weight loss. In all the cases the operation was limited to the lesser curvature of the stomach, and certain technical maneuvers were done to facilitate the creation of the pouch and anastomosis.


There were three major complications, and two patients required reoperation. There were no gastrointestinal leaks or mortality. Percentage weight loss at 5 years was similar to primary gastric bypasses. Conclusion: Converting failed or complicated VBGs to lesser curvature gastric bypasses are safe and effective weight loss operations. By performing several specific technical maneuvers and limiting the operation to the highly vascular lesser curvature, complications can be reduced to a minimum.

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