Bariatric Surgery Patients See Weight Loss for at Least Three Years Following Procedure

The LABS study funded by the National Institutes of Health found that patients showed a great success for substantial weight loss for up to three years later following surgery. The amount of weight loss varied according to the types of surgeries the patients had. This was the same as whether the surgery affected the patient’s blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes too. The median weight for patients in this study was 284 pounds.

The researchers found the most success in the group who had a body mass index of more than 35 before surgery. The study looked at patients from 10 hospitals in 6 clinical centers within the United States. The patients all were undergoing bariatric surgery for the first time.

The researchers of this study report there are many reasons why people become morbidly obese and doctors aren’t sure what treatment should be tailored in order to treat it in each patient. The study studied individuals who had two types of surgeries. The 1,738 people who had Rouen-en Y gastric bypass surgery. They found that patients maintained a weight loss of about a third of their initial weight (about 90 pounds). The 610 individuals who had lap band surgery maintained an average 16% weight loss or only 40 pounds.

In terms of death rate, both surgeries ranked about the same at just 1% of all surgeries. However, those who had lap band surgery were much more likely to need more surgery for revisional reasons at 18%. For bypass study group, nearly 75% of patients who had diabetes prior to surgery had at least partial remission of their disease. For lap band patients, 27% saw a change in their condition. Gastric bypass was better at reducing lipid levels and blood pressure.

Researchers found that vertical sleeve gastrectomy which reshapes the stomach into a tube does not interfere with the absorption of nutrients and iron as much of that of Roux-en-Y bypass surgery.

The study also looked at how weight loss surgery affected teenagers. After studying nearly 242 teenagers who had bariatric surgery, they all did fairly well a month after surgery with just 8% having major complications and 15% with minor ones. This study hopes to study more factors in terms of teenagers in the next few years due to the controversy of whether teenagers should endure these surgeries or not.