Allergan Inc. is seeking approval from the Food and Drug Administration to market its relatively new weight-loss device to obese teenagers. Clinical trials are currently taking place on young adults. The surgery works by fitting a silicone ring around the stomach to decrease food intake. More than 600,000 people have had the surgery since 1993, including teenagers. Doctors already can perform the surgery on minors with parental approval. Allowing Allergan to specifically target teens could make it more likely that insurers would pay for the surgery. How effective has the surgery been for adults? What are the safety concerns long-term? Is surgery the only answer for some teens?
Dr. Robert Cywes, Bariatric Surgeon participating in Allergan’s clinical trials on teens
Diana Zuckerman, President of the National Research Center for Women and Families; President of the Cancer & Treatment Fund
Steven Mittelman, Assistant Professor, Pediatrics, Physiology & Biophysics, Childrens Hospital Los Angeles and Keck School of Medicine, USC