Tech breakthrough enables reversible weight loss surgery

14 May 2010

Medical device firm Crospon’s EndoFLIP system has been used for the first time to assist in a newly emerging weight loss surgery technique known as gastric imbrications.

Unique as a weight loss procedure, gastric imbrication is a reversible procedure with no device required to be implanted and no stomach tissue removed.

With more than 200,000 people engaging in surgical weight loss procedures annually in the US, the appeal and potential for such a procedure is significant.

“The EndoFLIP device has the ability to change the way we do bariatric surgery all over the world. There has been nothing as revolutionary as this device since the lap band,” Dr Daniel Cottam said.

“I believe in five years we won’t know how we ever did bariatric surgery without it,” Cottam added.

In the case of sleeve gastrectomy, a significant portion of the stomach is surgically removed during the weight loss procedure, whereas with the gastric imbrication procedure no stomach tissue is removed.

Using EndoFLIP

The Cottam technique represents an enhancement to the gastric imbrication procedure which entails the placing of an EndoFLIP catheter along the lesser curve of the stomach during the procedure.

This permits the surgeon to precisely stitch the stomach to give a desired sleeve diameter. For example, in the case of a bariatric revision procedure, it may be desirable to create a 20mm diameter sleeve where the objective might be weight loss maintenance, whereas in the case of a primary bariatric procedure, a 13mm diameter sleeve could be created to promote weight loss.

Commenting on the new Cottam technique, John O’Dea, CEO, Crospon, said: “We believe that this is a very innovative use for the EndoFLIP  technology, and that it fills an important need for the gastric imbrication procedure, namely providing visual feedback to the surgeon as to the size of sleeve being created.”

The Hospital Angeles, in Tijuana, Mexico, under the control of Dr Juan Antonio Lopez Corvala and his team, will be conducting training on the gastric imbrication surgical technique in June using the Crospon EndoFLIP to create the sleeve during the procedure.

Larry Fulton, VP of Sales, Crospon, commented, “This is truly breakthrough technology to allow the surgeon to create a ‘custom sleeve’ to avoid post-operative complications.”

“It is a perfect marriage of a new procedure and a new technology to benefit patients and to give more consistent surgical outcomes,” Fulton said.

By John Kennedy

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years