A surgeon is under review by California's medical board after two of his patients died after receiving Lap-Band implants to lose weight, reports the Los Angeles Times. The board informed relatives of the women, ages 33 and 52, that the "quality of care" provided by Dr. Atul Madan at the Beverly Hills Medical Center is being investigated. A third patient died in 2009 at the clinic after receiving an implant from a different surgeon.
Banding is gaining popularity as a less invasive alternative to gastric bypass. The investigations appear to be focusing not on the Lap-Band device itself but on the care patients received following surgery. An attorney for the clinic, which the LAT notes is one of several that gets referrals from a 1-800 number on ubiquitous billboards, says Madan is a "world-renowned surgeon" and that nothing he did contributed to the women's deaths. Click to read about one critic's concern of the procedure among teens.
(Read more lap band surgery stories.)