Long-Term Effects of Bariatric Surgery on Health-Related Quality of Life: A Systematic Review

Roberta Sonia Alvares, Maria De Fátima H Diniz, Ana Luisa Bagno De Almeida, Matheus N L Paolo, Alline Maria Beleigoli

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Introduction: Obese patients who seek bariatric surgery (BS) have great impairment in health-related quality of life (HRQoL). Along with weight loss, BS leads to improvement in HRQoL in the short-term. However, physical, psychological and social issues that ensue after BS might impact on HRQoL in the long-term. The aim was to systematically review the literature in order to explore the impact of bariatric surgery on HRQoL of severely obese patients in the long-term. Methods: Electronic databases were searched (Pubmed/Medline, Lilacs, IBECS, Cochrane Library, SciELO) to retrieve studies of adults with BMI≥35kg/m² which assessed HRQoL five or more years after BS. Hand search of references of previous reviews was also performed. GRADE was used to assess the quality of the evidence. Results: Of the 1226 articles retrieved, nine longitudinal studies were selected. A total of 4031 patients were followed-up. Female sex was predominant in all studies. Only one study did not find improvement in HRQoL after BS. Improvement of physical aspects of HRQoL was more commonly reported than mental aspects. The quality of the evidence retrieved was rated as low mainly due to the lack of adjustment for prognostic factors that might have led to counfounding in the assessment of HRQoL and under-report of follow-up rates. Differences in the instruments to assess HRQoL and in the composition of control groups among the studies did not allow to perform meta-analysis. Conclusion: BS was associated with improvement in HRQoL in the long-term, particularly in physical aspects. The low quality of the studies selected points out to the need of controlled trials to better assess the long-term effects of BS on HRQoL.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-67
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Surgery (New York)
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2018

Bibliographical note

This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


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