On a fairly surprising note, the FDA adjusted its criteria for LapBand surgery. The old FDA recommendations were for LapBand placement in adults with a BMI of greater than 40, or a BMI 35-40 with a serious medical condition related to obesity. The new criteria have dropped the BMI level to 30-35 with a serious medical condition. What’s a serious medical condition? This will include diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea, and heart disease. This is a big step in realizing surgical weight loss as the best tool in conjunction with a comprehensive weight loss program, to improve an individual’ health.
Even though the FDA now approves this lower BMI rating, I doubt the local insurances will rush to alter their surgical weight loss policy criteria. So, for now, if one falls within this category, they will most likely have to pursue surgery on a cash pay basis.