FDA Backs Expansion of Lap-Band Surgery to Non-Severely Obese Patients

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A federal advisory board panel is endorsing an expansion of the use of Allergan's Lap-Band stomach restricting device to patients who are not severely obese.

The vote could double the number of Americans who qualify for this weight-loss surgery.

The FDA itself still must make the ultimate decision, but it usually follow the recommendations of its advisory committees.

Current guidelines allow the surgery to be performed for patients with a BMI of 40 and above, or 35 and above if they have diabetes, hypertension or another severe health problem linked to their weight.

A person who is 5"5' with hypertension would need to weigh 210 pounds to qualify under the existing guidelines. Under the new guidelines proposed by the committee, that person would have to weigh just 180 pounds.

Would you consider this surgery or would you rather lose weight naturally?

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