Gastric Banding Industry Climbing

Gastric banding surgeries are on the rise, despite the shaky economy.  Research shows that doctors performed 350,000 bariatric procedures in 2009, and a 20 percent increase is expected in 2010.

The economy may have been declining in the past year, but gastric band surgeries are on the rise.

The World Health Organization estimates that between 2005 and 2015, the worldwide number of obese adults will increase from 400 million to 700 million. And more and more of those people will turn to surgery to help them lose weight.

Healthcare market research firm Kalorama Information estimates doctors performed 350,000 bariatric procedures in 2009, and that the number of surgeries has increased an average rate of 20 percent each year since 1994.

According to Kalorama, women in their late thirties and early forties account for most bariatric surgeries, and gastric bypass surgery remains the most popular weight loss surgery procedure. However, about 40 percent of all bariatric procedures involve gastric banding, and the gastric banding market is responsible for more than 90 percent of total sales for bariatric surgical devices, which also includes tools like intragastric balloons and suture systems.

In spite of a shaky economy and our nation’s ongoing debate about health care reform, Kalorama analyst Melissa Elder explained that the sheer number of obese people seeking help will keep surgeries on the rise.

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