See you in Edinburgh

We hope to see you at the forthcoming AUGIS Annual Scientific Meeting which will take place from Wednesday 19 – Friday 21 September at the Murrayfield Stadium in Edinburgh and will include bariatric free paper sessions.

The provisional Scientific Programme is available online at:

All other details including information on the venue and hotel options can also be found on the Meeting Microsite:

AHP wins IFSO scholarship

Bariatric dietitian Sally Abbott is the European winner of an IFSO scholarship and will travel to Dubai for IFSO 2018.

Sally says: “I have been working as a bariatric dietitian in the NHS for four years and am an AHP member of BOMSS. I completed my Masters of Research and submitted my thesis abstract to IFSO 2018 in Dubai. At the same time, I applied to the IFSO integrated Health Scholarship in the hope of being able to travel to Dubai and present my own research.

“I am completely delighted to have won one of five global scholarships from IFSO and for my hard work and contribution to bariatric surgery in the UK to be publicly recognised.

“Winning this scholarship has given me the opportunity to attend and present at an international conference for the first time in my career. I hope that by presenting my abstracts at IFSO in September 2018, I will have opportunities to build networks with colleagues from around the world and bring home new knowledge to inform my own team’s dietetic clinical practice. Of course, I also look forward to exploring Dubai!”

Congratulations to Sally from all at BOMSS.


Call for AUGISt Trainee rep nomination

AUGIS Council is seeking nominations for the role of AUGIS Trainee Representative from September 2018. The primary role of Trainee Representative involves attending AUGIS Council meetings, chairing the AUGISt committee, writing for the AUGIS Newsletter and contributing to the Training Day.  There are also other responsibilities that arise on an ad hoc basis from both ASiT and AUGIS.

If you wish to be considered for the role of AUGIS Trainee Representative, an expression of interest should be to Mr Adrian O’Sullivan, Honorary Secretary of AUGIS, c/o Nichola Bartlett ( You must be a current paid up Trainee Member of AUGIS and AUGIS/BOMSS.

Applicants will also require a proposer and seconder, who should also both be current Trainee Members and must email their support to Nichola Bartlett ( prior to the closing date.

The deadline for nominations is 9am, Thursday 27 July.  If more than one person is nominated for the position a ballot will take place and nominees will be required to provide a 100 word personal statement to accompany the ballot.


Walsall to host mini gastric bypass session

Walsall Manor Hospital’s Bariatric Unit have managed to secure a visit by Doctor Rutledge who will be sharing his experience on Mini Gastric Bypass and he will be performing live surgery on Monday, 25 June.

Please click here for the programme for the day. If you would like to attend, contact Paula Lightwood, Bariatric Medical Secretary at Walsall Manor Hospital, on 01922 721172 ext 7763 to secure your place.

A date in Doncaster

The Bariatric unit at Doncaster Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals is pleased to announce the second MGB/OAGB course on 24 May.

The course is for one day including live surgery and keynote lectures.The deadline for application is 24 April.

  • The course fee is £95 and the UGI trainees will enjoy 50% discount.
  • The course is for UGI trainees with bariatric interest and also for junior bariatric Consultants who are interested in the procedure.
  • Email Mr A Hussain, consultant bariatric surgeon, at or Sandra Patterson at  for a registration form and programme details.

By-Band-Sleeve Trial update

Message from Lead Surgeon Richard Welbourn

Nearly 10 years ago – January 2009 – I was co-chair of a scientific session at the Society of Academic & Research Surgery annual conference in Bristol.  My co-chair was Prof Jane Blazeby and over coffee we got talking about bariatric surgery.  After a few more meetings and time putting together a research team of surgeons, trials methodologists, statisticians, health economists and qualitative researchers we decided that we should conduct a randomised controlled trial (RCT) – but what operations to evaluate was the big question?  Fast forward two years and we were awarded a major NIHR grant for and RCT to compare gastric banding and gastric bypass operations.

We knew from data in the National Bariatric Surgery Registry that these two procedures comprised 80% of operations for severe and complex obesity in the UK and we thought it was important that we asked the most relevant question so the results would influence practice.  The operations and aftercare are very different and at the time no one thought it was possible to randomise patients – and this is where Prof Jenny Donovan and her team of qualitative researchers in Bristol came in.  She is a world-leading expert in teaching researchers how to randomise into clinical trials – putting patients into equipoise, a skill completely new to me – and for the first year of the study we had to demonstrate that we could indeed recruit.  The process involved all our clinic appointments being recorded and analysed so that the phrases we use encourage patient understanding of the equipoise and informed consent.  After much one-to-one tuition, the first two centres (Taunton and Southampton) were able to recruit sufficient patients to allow the study to progress from two centres to twelve.

Fast forward another five years from when the first patient was enrolled in 2012 and we have recruited altogether over 900 patients.  It is an extraordinary achievement for the UK, which has taken up bariatric surgery much later than many countries and still has one of the lowest per capita rates of surgery.  By comparison, the next largest RCT is around 220 patients.  “Collaboration is the new competition” is a phrase I have learnt from Jane Blazeby and Natalie Blencowe and this really represents a sea change from consultants doing individual pieces of research for the SpRs to publish in minor journals, to working together on a major project.

One of the challenges is that over time practice has changed and sleeve gastrectomy has largely taken the place of gastric banding in the NHS.  With primary endpoints of weight loss and quality of life at 3 years, there was always a risk that ‘technology creep’ would mean that the relevance of the original research question might change over time.  Therefore, the NIHR agreed to us adapting the study to add a third group, sleeve gastrectomy, and it became ‘By-Band-Sleeve’.  As a consequence, the sample size increased from 724 to over 1,300 patients – another hugely ambitious but get-able target.  It is a privilege to be involved in a research effort that could, when published, be regarded as a landmark demonstration of a well-conducted RCT.