Use of Standard Hypodermic Needles for Accessing Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Band Ports
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Laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding is a common and successful method of surgically treating morbid obesity. A recipient will have to attend their surgeon’s rooms a number of times to optimally adjust the amount of fluid in the band and hence the amount of restriction. Manufacturers suggest that the ports should be accessed with special non-coring needles that may not always be available in regional or remote centers, and this could create a safety risk in cases where urgent band deflation is required.
Ports of two different brands were repeatedly accessed over 100 times in the same location while containing fluid under pressure, using a standard beveled 21 g hypodermic needle (SN) and a 20 g Huber tipped non-coring needle (NCN). The path the needles types took through the port septum was also examined.
There was no leakage of fluid from any of the ports tested. Neither SN nor NCN passed through the port septum down their axis, but rather in a direction closer to that of their beveled surface.
There is no more risk of “coring” the septum with a SN than with a NCN. SN can be used safely and routinely to access laparoscopic adjustable gastric band ports.
KeywordsGastric band port Port leakage Non-coring needle Huber needle Hypodermic needle Intra-band pressure
The Lap-Band System ports were kindly provided by Allergan Australia, Gordon, NSW, Australia. The Heliogast ports were kindly provided by Matrix Surgical, Malvern, Vic, Australia.
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