FDA panel recommends expanding lap band surgery

December 3, 2010 6:05:27 PM PST
A Food and Drug Administration panel recommended expanding the criteria of who qualifies for a stomach-shrinking procedure.

The lap band surgery is currently only approved for the obese who weigh 247 lbs. or more and are at least 5'6" tall.

On Friday the panel recommended patients weighing less may qualify, especially if they suffer from other conditions such as hypertension.

While the procedure comes with risks, patients lose 40 lbs. on average.

If the FDA follows its panel's recommendation, an estimated 27 million other overweight patients would be eligible.


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