Compared with routine care, weight loss surgery was linked with a reduced risk of hypertension, heart failure, and early death in a study based on information from a primary care database in the UK. The findings are published in BJS (British Journal of Surgery).
Although clinical studies have shown that weight loss surgery may reduce the risk of developing and dying from cardiovascular disease, studies using real-world data are limited. In the BJS study, investigators analysed data on 5,170 patients with obesity who underwent weight loss surgery and 9,995 patients with obesity who received only routine care.
Patients who underwent surgery had a 30% lower risk of dying from any cause, a 59% lower risk of developing hypertension, and a 43% lower risk of developing heart failure, compared with patients who did not undergo surgery.
Also, patients who underwent gastric bypass surgery–a specific kind of weight loss surgery–had a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases in general compared with patients who did not have surgery.
Obesity is a chronic disease that is associated with many comorbidities and complications. Our results show the benefits of weight loss surgery in reducing the health burdens of obesity in real-world data. This is important considering the lower provision and availability of weight loss surgery in the UK compared with other European countries that have a lower prevalence of obesity. Weight loss surgery is an important treatment option in people with obesity, and improved access can help reduce the burden of this disease.