VA North Texas Health Care System recently performed the first patient implant of vBloc, a technology-based, scientifically advanced weight loss therapy.

vBloc MaestrovBloc is a pacemaker-like implant called the Maestro® Rechargeable System that intermittently blocks intra-abdominal vagus nerve signals or transmission of messages involving food intake and processing between the brain and stomach. The Maestro System is wireless and customizable to meet the needs of a patient’s changing lifestyle. The implant is minimally invasive and performed as an out-patient procedure   that does not alter or restrict the patient’s anatomy.

The procedure was performed on Thursday, May 28, 2015, by Dr. Sachin Kukreja, Director of Bariatric Surgery, at VA North Texas and the patient is recovering well.

In January of this year, the Maestro System was approved for use in adults with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 40 to 45 kg/m2 or a BMI of 35 to 39.9 kg/m2 with a related health condition such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol levels, and who have tried to lose weight in a supervised weight management program within the past five years.

There are currently many options for patients trying to lose weight.  Some involve behavior modification, others involve pharmaceuticals, or even surgery.  For patients pursuing surgery, the vBloc therapy allows patients to have successful surgical weight loss, without the need for anatomy alterations or the food restrictions that accompany the other operations.  This opens a new door in the surgical weight loss arena,” said Dr. Kukreja. “Earlier this year, the FDA approved this first-of-its-kind treatment that offers a neuroscience-based approach to the treatment of obesity, differentiating it from traditional weight loss surgical options.”

“The Veterans Health Administration and VA North Texas are committed to improving the health and well-being of Veterans through health care innovation,” said Dr. Jeffrey Hastings, Interim Chief of Staff at VA North Texas.  “By incorporating treatment options into our practice like vBloc Therapy, which is on the leading edge of science and technology, we are fulfilling that promise.”

About the VA North Texas Health Care System

VA North Texas Health Care System is a progressive health care provider in the heart of Texas. Poised as VA’s second largest health care system, it serves more than 117, 000 Veterans and delivers 1.4 million outpatient episodes of care each year to Veterans in 38 Texas counties and two counties in southern Oklahoma. The system has 5,000 employees and 1,700 community volunteers who are driven by the passion to serve at Dallas VA Medical Center, Sam Rayburn Memorial Veterans Center, Fort Worth Outpatient Clinic, Tyler VA Primary Care Clinic, Polk Street VA Clinic and five community based outpatient clinics.

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Published on Jun. 4, 2015

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9 Comments

  1. Robin Morello June 5, 2015 at 11:00 am

    I am a veteran with 5 point preference and would LOVE the opportunity to work in the the Bariatric department at this VA hospital in Texas!! I have been a Bariatric Coordinator and Nurse Educator for the past 8 years but an looking to move to Texas. Are there any opportunities for employment within this department?? Robin M. RN, CBN, BSN

  2. Ken Ortensie June 5, 2015 at 10:20 am

    I just had my lap band removed at the VA here in. San Antonio. I suff e r from PTSD and other emotional issues. Food is my release. Would this procedure help me, or would it be a waste of time?

    Ken Ortensie

  3. Maribel Rodriguez June 5, 2015 at 9:22 am

    Is this procedure available in Florida? I have all the problems described and been struggling with my weight for a long time.

  4. robert Busby June 5, 2015 at 8:42 am

    How do I get this treatment

  5. Roger O'Donohue June 4, 2015 at 7:06 pm

    I had a gastric bypass performed in 2007 at the VA in Loma Linda, Ca. The last two years i have gaining the weight back.
    Will this procedure be available in California?

  6. Raymond Wright June 4, 2015 at 2:51 pm

    I would love to have this procedure and think I meet all of the standards. I am a 50% disabled veteran and live in Charleston, SC. I would even consider flying at my own expense to Texas to have this done.

    • Ellen Bennett June 4, 2015 at 6:06 pm

      Raymond, I’d give the Texas VA a call, to see what they can do for you, whether you can fly there to have it done, …. or perhaps a closer VA to you may be ready to start making VBLOC implants as well. Obviously, it would benefit you to go to the closer VA to where you live in Charleston, so that you can make “regular” followup visits, to check on your progress.

  7. sam commander June 4, 2015 at 12:36 pm

    Is this available at the cColumbia,SC hospital

  8. Stephen A. Edens June 4, 2015 at 10:49 am

    Will this type of surgery be available in the West Virginia area? I meet all the requirements to have the implant and I’m very interested to hear more about this procedure. I’m 100% Disable, Service Connected, I’ve had five back surgeries and high cholesterol, high blood pressure. It is very difficult for me to exercise. The vBloc procedure.

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