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Live My C.H.O.I.C.E. - LapBand Contest sponsored by Allergan

I read about this "contest" in an email from OSSG-gone_wrong (obesity surgery gone wrong support group). One of the group members got the following email:

Enter the The Live My Choice Contest Program (Ends December 14th)

To raise awareness of the challenges those 100 pounds or more overweight face and to highlight the critical need to ensure access to treatment, Allergan, Inc. has launched the Live My C.H.O.I.C.E. Contest Program to provide three individuals with a LAP-BAND® Adjustable Gastric Banding System procedure, performed by a certified LAP-BAND® System surgeon of their choice, and one year of follow-up care, compliments of Allergan, Inc. The contest program is a part of Allergan’s public advocacy campaign, launched in May 2010, called C.H.O.I.C.E. (Choosing Health over Obesity Inspiring Change through Empowerment).

The contest ends December 14th. To qualify you must meet the clinical criteria for the LAP-BAND® System procedure: Body Mass Index (BMI) of at least 40; BMI of at least 35 with one or more serious comorbid conditions; or be at least 100 pounds over your ideal weight as determined by a physician. To enter the contest, submit a short essay or video at about how your weight has impacted your health and life, and why the LAP-BAND® System may be the tool to help you achieve your weight-loss goal. A family member or close friend may also enter the contest on a person’s behalf.

Individuals selected to receive a LAP-BAND® System procedure will publicly share their weight-loss journey in an effort to inspire others who are severely obese to reclaim their health and their lives. As part of this Contest Program, Allergan will provide all entrants the opportunity to receive free telephone consultations with a health educator who can provide one-on-one support, such as assistance in finding a local patient seminar, access to more information and resources regarding the LAP-BAND® System.

More information about the contest, including details on the rules and eligibility, can be accessed at

You can read more about this travesty of a contest here.

The contest is over, 3 "contestants" have been chosen to undergo this procedure and 12 people who have already had the LapBand have been chosen to go to Congress and tell their stories about their weight loss and to
be the voice for others to help acknowledgment of obesity as a disease, NOT a choice, and acceptance of all treatments, including weight-loss surgery.

Um, yeah, there's just so much wrong with this that I can't even begin to enumerate it all. When I first read this, I was sputtering with rage and just didn't have enough swear words in my vocabulary for Allergan (although I went through every one that I had and made up a few, I can tell you).

"Obesity" is not a disease, nor is it a "choice" for most people. So far, the treatments the medical and pharmaceutical communities have come up with have created many more problems than they've solved, and, I would venture to say, have probably killed more fat people than being fat alone has.

But promoting actual healthy lifestyles, without mutilating functional digestive systems or restricting calories so that people become thin at any cost, doesn't make billions of dollars for the medical/pharmaceutical communities.

Is the medical/pharmaceutical community so hard up for patient/insurance dollars that they have to resort to a travesty of a "contest" in order to bring in more patients? The real tragedy here is that people think they're winning something that is going to improve their health, when in reality, what they've "won" is another diet where they'll end up gaining back what they lost and maybe more, not to mention the possible/probable complications that will last a lifetime and will outlast their insurance coverage. Doesn't sound like much of a "win" to me.

And this bullshit of asking Congress to declare "obesity" a disease? Really, Allergan? I'm sorry, but even though I'm fat ("morbidly obese" to you), I'm not diseased, I don't need "treatment" from you that isn't going to work and where the failure is going to be blamed on me. I don't need your shame and blame, nor do any other fat people, we're doing just fine without you, thank you very much.

Lonie McMichael: Intro & hook's ideology of domination | 'Free market' causes obesity?

diane January 7th, 2011 | Link | Well I gotta hand it to

Well I gotta hand it to them... must have taken them hours to figure out how to use the word "choice" and turn it against women (the ones most likely to be targeted by wls). So much fail in this it's hard to know where to start. And they should not be cluttering up and taking the vaulable time of Congress to push their agenda.

Moody Blue's picture
Moody Blue
January 7th, 2011 | Link | They are now starting to

They are now starting to push the lap band procedure to people who are just moderately overweight and can't seem to lose those few "stubborn" pounds. This is unreal. I saw it on the news tonight and of course they have several smiling victims who are glad to promote it and how great they feel and their knees don't hurt and blah, blah, blah...

This means really big bucks for the lap band folks and the butchers who perform the procedure now that they're also going after the thinner folks with big self esteem issues...

richie79's picture
January 9th, 2011 | Link | "This means really big bucks

"This means really big bucks for the lap band folks and the butchers who perform the procedure now that they're also going after the thinner folks with big self esteem issues..."

Exactly. Much as they insist on one hand that WLS is a medical procedure and all about treating a 'disease' it's becoming quite clear from the way it's being pushed at people well below the 'morbid' category that it's increasingly being regarded as a cosmetic quick fix, not least by the media. What's more, this should leave no-one in any doubt as to the cosy relationship between Government and Big Pharma. I have to say I knew it was only a matter of time before some low-life dreamed up the idea of using WLS as a competition prize - I'm still waiting for some sort of reality format a la Biggest Loser where contestants fight it out for the 'privilege' of gastric mutilation.

"What is right is not always popular and what is popular is not always right" - Albert Einstein

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