Complications in bariatric surgery with focus on gastric bypass
Abstract: Obesity is rising in pandemic proportions. At present, one third of the world’s population has become overweight or obese, and estimates predict 60% in 2030. Thus, the problem is gigantic. Obesity is associated with numerous diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep apnea and cancer. Untreated obesity decreases life expectancy by about 10 years. Gastric bypass has been one of the cornerstones of surgical treatment. Since 1994 this is done by laparoscopic technique (LRYGB)In this thesis, we have primarily used data from our national quality register, the Scandinavian Obesity Surgical Registry (SOReg), on patients that have been operated with LRYGB. In the first paper, we evaluated the use of a novel suture for closing the gastrojejunostomy (upper anastomosis). Paper II and III focused on incidence, risk factors, treatment and outcome of anastomotic leaks. Paper IV compares the weight results, quality of life, use of medications and healthcare consumption in patients suffering from a serious complication within 30 days after LRYGB.In Paper I, the use of the barbed suture resulted in shorter operative time compared to a standard polyfilament, without increased risk for complications. Paper II showed that the incidence of anastomotic leaks at the gastrojejunostomy was 0.6%. Risk factors were male sex, higher age (≥49 years), diabetes, conversion to open surgery and prolonged operative time (≥ 90 minutes). Almost all patients were reoperated and 1% died. Paper III showed that the incidence of small bowel leaks was 0.3% and these leaks were associated with prolonged operative time, and surgery at a low-volume centre for leaks at the enteroaenteral anastomosis. Surgical re-intervention was common. Paper IV showed that severe complications within 30 days postoperatively after LRYGB occurred in 2.9% of cases. Two years later, the patients still reported inferior quality of life and had a higher use of antidepressants, proton pump inhibitors and opioids compared to uncomplicated cases. The need for additional in-hospital care was higher, even after the first 30 days.In conclusion, the novel barbed suture reduced operative time without increasing risks. Anastomotic leaks are rare, but serious complications in LRYGB do affect the patient in numerous ways and increase healthcare costs.
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