Determinants of Long-Term Satisfaction after Vertical Banded Gastroplasty
Background: The long-term usefulness of vertical banded gastroplasty (VBG) in achieving weight loss is controversial, and adverse effects related to the procedure may attenuate patient satisfaction. Our objective was to evaluate patient satisfaction, and to identify parameters that are related to such satisfaction, 3 to10 years after VBG. Methods: All consecutive patients who underwent VBG in one surgical ward were invited for a follow-up study 3 to 10 years after surgery. Questions relating to symptoms and quality of life were evaluated in a personal interview using a structured questionnaire. Results: Of the 122 patients who underwent VBG from 1986 to 1992, 75 patients were located and agreed to participate in the follow-up study. The average time since surgery was 5.4 ± 1.8 years. The average weight loss was 24.9 ± 12.4%, representing an excess body-weight loss of 58.6 ± 30.4%. Overall, 65% of the patients were satisfied with the results of surgery while 19% expressed dissatisfaction. Significant improvement was seen in respiratory difficulties, ability to perform physical exercise, and mental status. Successful weight loss and the frequency of respiratory difficulties were the only independent parameters associated with patient satisfaction. Although vomiting, gastroesophageal reflux and difficulty in swallowing occurred in over two-thirds of the patients, their presence was not correlated with patient dissatisfaction. Conclusion: Despite the presence of a multitude of adverse effects, the majority of our patients were satisfied with the long-term results of VBG. Successful weight loss and improvement in respiratory difficulties were the major determinants of patient satisfaction.
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