Background: Vertical banded gastroplasty (VBG) is a frequently used surgical procedure for the treatment of morbid obesity. It can be done open (OVBG) or laparoscopic (LVBG). The aim of this double-blind randomized clinical trial was to compare the postoperative outcome and 1-year follow-up of 2 cohorts of patients who underwent either OVBG or LVBG.
Patients and methods: 30 patients with morbid obesity were randomized into 2 groups (14 OVBG and 16 LVBG). Pain intensity, analgesic requirements, respiratory function, and physical activity were blindly analyzed during the first 3 postoperative days. Complications, weight loss, and cosmetic results after 1 year follow-up were evaluated.
Results: Both groups were highly comparable before surgery. Surgical time was longer in the laparoscopic procedure. Patients in this group required less analgesics during the first postoperative day. There was an earlier recovery in the expiratory and inspiratory forces, as well as faster recovery of physical activities in patients who underwent LVBG. Postoperative complications were more frequent in the open group. Excess body weight loss after 1 year was similar in both groups. Cosmetic results were significantly better in the laparoscopic group.
Conclusions: LVBG had advantages over the open procedure in terms of analgesic requirements, respiratory function, postoperative recovery, and cosmetic results.