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Bariatric operations: Perioperative morbidity and mortality

Robert B Lim, MD, FACS, COL, MC, USA
Section Editor
Daniel Jones, MD
Deputy Editor
Wenliang Chen, MD, PhD


Bariatric operations are performed as an effective method to reduce obesity and obesity-linked medical illnesses. Operating on obese patients is challenging because of anatomic and physiologic characteristics and comorbidities of obese patients. However, the risk of serious intraoperative and in-hospital complications and mortality rates are relatively low when the surgery is performed by experienced surgeons with an institutional investment in bariatric programs.

Adverse intraoperative events (AIE) are a risk factor for serious postoperative complications (eg, pulmonary embolus, myocardial infarction) [1,2]. In addition, postoperative complication rates vary with surgical approach, such as fewer complications with the laparoscopic approach than the open approach [3]. Complications also vary based upon type of procedure, such as fewer complications with the adjustable gastric band (AGB) than the laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (LRYGB) [3-5].

This topic will review the major perioperative (intraoperative and in-hospital postoperative) complications and mortality rates of the more common bariatric surgical procedures, including laparoscopic and open Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB), laparoscopic adjustable gastric band (LAGB), laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (LSG), and biliopancreatic diversion with duodenal switch (BPD-DS).

A description of bariatric procedures, indications and preoperative management, short-time medical outcomes, and long-term complications of laparoscopic operations are reviewed as separate topics.

(See "Bariatric procedures for the management of severe obesity: Descriptions".)

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Literature review current through: Nov 2017. | This topic last updated: Apr 20, 2017.
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