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Capitol Health Call
March 14, 2012

Device Scrutiny Sought

JAMA. 2012;307(10):1015. doi:10.1001/jama.2012.258

Three Democratic members of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce are asking its Republican leadership to hold hearings to examine the efficacy and possible complications of lap-band weight loss devices and urogynecologic surgical mesh implants.

Rep Henry A. Waxman (D, Calif), Rep Diana DeGette (D, Col), and Rep John D. Dingell (D, Mich), in their January 20 letter, noted studies of lap-band devices showed that after 6 years of use, nearly 50% of patients had either not lost weight or had needed the device to be removed and that more than 40% of patients experienced long-term complications (Romy S et al. Arch Surg. doi: 10.1001/archsurg.2011.1708 [published online January 16, 2012]). They also expressed concerns about manufacturers of lap-bands seeking to expand the market to children as young as 14 years.

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