SOURCE: American Institute of Gastric Banding

May 03, 2006 16:41 ET

AIGB Names Author of Landmark Weight-Loss Surgery Study to National Medical Director Post

DALLAS, TX -- (MARKET WIRE) -- May 3, 2006 -- Peter R. Gottlieb, CEO of Dallas based American Institute of Gastric Banding (AIGB) announced today that "AIGB has received a flood of inquiries regarding the company's new association with Dr. Paul O'Brien, his landmark weight-loss surgery study published in the May 2, 2006 edition of Annals of Internal Medicine and numerous media reports regarding this study including those in today's USA Today and on 'CNN Headline News.'"

According to Mr. Gottlieb, "Dr. Paul O'Brien has been named National Medical Director for American Institute of Gastric Banding. In this newly created role, Dr. O'Brien will be responsible for the further development of AIGB's industry leading procedures and guidelines as well as overall quality control -- geared towards continually improving clinical results and the optimization of patient care. Dr. O'Brien brings to AIGB an unmatched level of clinical experience and his team at the Centre for Obesity Research and Education (CORE) is the world's leader in the research of bariatric procedures."

Dr. O'Brien stated, "I am delighted to be able to work with AIGB, who better than anyone, has been able to demonstrate the effectiveness of this minimally invasive day surgery procedure. AIGB has a very well established process and my goal is to draw upon my research and clinical experience to further improve upon its careful pre-operative assessment program and to implement a more comprehensive and effective follow-up program."

Dr. O'Brien is Director of the Centre for Obesity Research and Education (CORE), a major research center within Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. He has conducted numerous studies on the morbidity of obesity and the health benefits of weight loss, and recently served as lead investigator of the first randomized controlled trial to examine the relationship between weight-loss surgery and traditional, non-surgical therapy.

His new study, published in the May 2, 2006 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine, measured the effects of the Lap-Band procedure versus traditional non-surgical weight loss attempts in patients with a body mass index of 30 to 35. He and his colleagues discovered that surgical patients in the two-year study lost an average of 87 percent of their excess weight, while non-surgical patients actually gained weight.

Dr. O'Brien brings a valuable wealth of experience to AIGB. Australia has moved far beyond the earlier, traditional, more drastic bariatric procedures which involved cutting, stapling and rerouting and has embraced the Lap-Band procedure which was first introduced in Australia in 1994, some seven years before the procedure was introduced into the United States. The Lap-Band procedure now accounts for nearly 95% of all bariatric surgeries performed in Australia.

AIGB is widely recognized as the #1 provider of the Lap-Band procedure in the world, having performed more than 5,000 surgeries at its facilities in Dallas, Fort Worth and Houston. AIGB's exciting new association with Dr. Paul O'Brien will allow it to continue to lead the way as the minimally invasive adjustable gastric banding procedure -- the Lap-Band -- becomes the "gold standard" for the treatment of morbid obesity.

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