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Long-Term Follow-Up Shows Bariatric Patients Keep Weight Off

10-year follow-up study finds many who had gastric bypass surgery maintained weight loss

THURSDAY, Sept. 1, 2016 (HealthDay News) — Much of the weight lost via bariatric surgery appears to stay off for at least 10 years, according to a study published online Aug. 31 in JAMA Surgery.

Matt Maciejewski, Ph.D., professor of medicine at the Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, N.C., and colleagues compared the results of 1,787 men and women who had gastric bypass surgery with weight changes in 5,305 obese veterans who had no weight-loss surgery or formal weight-loss treatment. At the study’s one-year mark, those who had the bypass had lost 31.0 percent of their starting weight, but the non-surgical patients had lost just 1.1 percent. At 10 years, the researchers had weight information on 564 of the 1,787 patients who had gastric bypass. Only 19 of them had regained so much weight that they were nearly back to their starting weight; the rest maintained their weight loss. Compared to the non-surgical group, the bypass group weighed 21.0 percent less than they did at the start of the study.

The researchers then compared three types of weight-loss surgeries: gastric bypass; sleeve gastrectomy; and adjustable gastric banding. After four years, those who had gastric bypass lost 27.5 percent of their starting weight. Patients who had sleeve gastrectomy lost 17.8 percent and those with gastric banding lost 10.6 percent. The average age of the men and women studied was 52.1; three-quarters were men and most were white.

“These results provide further evidence of the beneficial association between surgery and long-term weight loss that has been demonstrated in shorter-term studies of younger, predominantly female populations,” the authors conclude.

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