Why Would Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass Patients Choose Open Instead?
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Background: Laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (LRYGBP) has been demonstrated to be comparable to open Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (ORYGBP) surgery in randomized studies. Although a steep learning curve exists, laparoscopic bariatric surgery offers advantages if performed by an experienced bariatric surgeon. Despite these facts, some patients still choose to undergo ORYGBP. This investigation explored the reasons why patients who have had LRYGBP would decide to undergo the laparoscopic operation. Methods: A survey was given to patients who had undergone LRYGBP. The survey was designed to ascertain what factors would influence them to have LRYGBP versus ORYGBP. Incomplete responses were not included in the data analysis. Results: There were 41 patients who filled out the survey. Over 90% of the patients felt LRYGBP is better than open gastric bypass. There were 4 patients who had seen another surgeon who recommended ORYGBP. Approximately 61% (23/38) of the patients would have stayed with their surgeon even if their surgeon did not offer LRYGBP. In addition, 79% of patients (31/39) would have ORYGBP if their insurance did not cover LRYGBP. Most patients (67%) would have ORYGBP if their surgeon thought LRYGBP was experimental. If they were told that LRYGBP was too risky for them, 77% of patients (30/39) would have undergone ORYGBP. Only 15% of patients (6/40) would not have had surgery if LRYGBP did not exist. Conclusions: Patients are willing to undergo ORYGBP even if they believe that LRYGBP is better. Non-medical factors and/or surgeon recommendations instead of scientific data influence patient decision-making when choosing ORYGBP over LRYGBP.
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