Laparoscopic gastric plication reduces the size of the stomach to limit food intake. It is carried out using keyhole surgery through several (usually five or six) small cuts in the abdomen
It involves folding the stomach in on itself and stitching it together to reduce its volume by about 70%.
None of the stomach is removed and the procedure is potentially reversible. This is a new surgical technique which is thought to have less clinical complications than other techniques which involve inserting a foreign object [gastric band] or completely dissecting the stomach [gastric bypass].
Hospital length of stay is usually one or two nights. Similar to all weight loss surgical procedures patients must be committed to long-term follow up and adhering closely to pre and post-operative dietary restrictions.
Most patients are expected to be able to manage at home after two days with a recovery period of 2 to 4 weeks during which time patients take oral fluids only, after this period of time solid food is re-introduced.
As with all surgical procedures, this type of surgery carries a risk of bleeding, infection and unintentional injury to adjacent organs but there is no increased risk of complications that are not applicable to other weight reduction operations.
This is an established surgical procedure, however, as it is still fairly new it is considered to be experimental until firm long-term weight loss data is available.