‘Exceptional circumstances’

Please read Weight Loss Surgery for Children Saves Lives and Weight Loss Surgery for Children Saves Lives Part 2 for the beginning of this story.

This type of surgery has been performed in children for some time in the US and Australia, but only recently has it taken place in the UK.

Close-up of a person eating salad with a fork

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) says weight loss surgery should be considered for young people only if there are exceptional circumstances and that their families must fully understand the risks and possible side effects that accompany the procedure.

Mr. Desai sees Jayne as one of those patients for whom surgery is clearly justified.

Jayne had gastric band surgery in February 2012, which entailed putting an elastic band across the top end of her stomach to reduce the volume of food she can eat before feeling full.


People have a feeling that obesity is all preventable and is that person’s fault – but it’s not.” Mr. Ashish Desai, King’s College Hospital


Two months after the operation and Jayne is five stones (70 pounds/32 kg) lighter and has gone down four dress sizes.

“I am a totally changed person. I can now wear short-sleeved T-shirts and I’ve started learning to drive.

“I am 18 next year and I want to have a big party to show everyone the new, confident me.”

Weight loss surgery has had its challenges for Jayne. She had to live on water for a period after the operation and then slowly start eating puréed food followed by more solid foods.