Teens Experience Lesser Short-Term Complications Associated With Weight Loss Surgery

Latest study reveals that teenagers who are highly obese might experience very less short-term complications when they opt for a weight-loss surgery. The results of the study were featured in the JAMA Pediatrics journal.

Obesity in adolescents is a growing concern and based on the reports by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It shows that in US alone, the percentage of adolescents who are obese between the ages of 12 and 19, witnessed a drastic rise of 18% in the year 2010 when compared to the 5% increase in 1980.

The US researchers who worked with the investigators of Cincinnati Children Hospital Medical Center said that the rate of obesity among the adolescents is rising and so is the reputation of the weight-loss treatments like the bariatric or weight loss surgery.

Earlier data by researchers showed that it was safe to perform bariatric surgery on teenagers who are obese. However, they also indicated that there were some comprehensive studies that analyzed the safety and after-effects of the weight-loss surgery underwent by teenagers.

To fulfill the information about this procedure, the researchers studied a group of 242 teenagers who were highly obese and within the age of 17 years from 2007 to 2012, . The median body mass index or BMI of the teenagers involved in the study was 50.5. Among these teenagers, about 51% of the adolescents experience four or more medical conditions that were co-existing. The common medical conditions they experienced were high cholesterol levels, back pain, joint pain, sleep apnea, fatty liver issues and high blood pressure.

About 66% of the patients undertook gastric bypass surgery, which was to reroute the digestive system across the stomach. About 28% of the patients underwent vertical sleeve gastrectomy, which is a procedure to reduce the size of the stomach by 25% and about 6% of the teenagers experienced adjustable gastric band surgery to decrease the size of the stomach.

The researchers tracked the condition of the teenagers for 30 days after the surgical procedure and observed that 77% of them did not have any complications from the surgery. While 8% had re-operations following major complications.

Dr. Thomas Inge, Principal Investigator, Cincinnati Children Hospital Medical Center said that the findings of this study would be very assuring for those parents who are on the lookout of weight loss surgeries for their kids.