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In the hollow core photonic bandgap fibers, modal losses are strongly differentiated, potentially enabling effectively single mode guidance. However, in the presence of macro-bending, due to mode coupling, power in the low-loss mode launched into a bend is partially transferred into the modes with higher losses, thus resulting in increased propagation loss, and degradation of the beam quality. We show that coupled mode theory formulated in the curvilinear coordinates associated with a bend candoi:10.1364/oe.16.014945 pmid:18795031 fatcat:3nlijtrl4bdevl6yqmcxu57hcy