Preoperative weight loss may not provide health benefits after surgery

For obese and overweight patients, it is common for various surgical procedures to be deferred until they have lost weight through diet and exercise. In a BJS (British Journal of Surgery) analysis of published studies, however, preoperative weight loss interventions were not associated with reductions in morbidity or mortality during and after surgery.

The findings suggest that modest weight loss may not provide enough health benefits to reduce risks during and after surgery in patients with clinically significant obesity.

"Our work highlights the importance of breaking the stigma associated with obese patients in healthcare. Lifestyle changes leading to weight loss have not shown a benefit in reducing the postoperative outcomes in these patients," said lead author Dr. Marius Roman, of the University of Leicester, in the UK. "We would like to thank the British Heart Foundation for supporting this work."

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