Effect of BMI on safety of bariatric surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic, procedure choice, and safety protocols – An analysis from the GENEVA Study

GENEVA Collaborators

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Abstract

Background: It has been suggested that patients with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of > 60 kg/m2 should be offered expedited Bariatric Surgery (BS) during the Coronavirus Disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. The main objective of this study was to assess the safety of this approach. Methods: We conducted a global study of patients who underwent BS between 1/05/2020 and 31/10/2020. Patients were divided into three groups according to their preoperative BMI - Group I (BMI<50 kg/m2), Group II (BMI 50–60 kg/m2), and Group III (BMI>60 kg/m2). The effect of preoperative BMI on 30-day morbidity and mortality, procedure choice, COVID-19 specific safety protocols, and comorbidities was assessed. Results: This study included 7084 patients (5197;73.4 % females). The mean preoperative weight and BMI were 119.49 ± 24.4 Kgs and 43.03 ± 6.9 Kg/m2, respectively. Group I included 6024 (85 %) patients, whereas Groups II and III included 905 (13 %) and 155 (2 %) patients, respectively. The 30-day mortality rate was higher in Group III (p = 0.001). The complication rate and COVID-19 infection were not different. Comorbidities were significantly more likely in Group III (p = <0.001). A significantly higher proportion of patients in group III received Sleeve Gastrectomy or One Anastomosis Gastric Bypass compared to other groups. Patients with a BMI of > 70 kg/m2 had a 30-day mortality of 7.7 % (2/26). None of these patients underwent a Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass. Conclusion: The 30-day mortality rate was significantly higher in patients with BMI > 60 kg/m2. There was, however, no significant difference in complications rates in different BMI groups, probably due to differences in procedure selection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)249-253
Number of pages5
JournalObesity Research and Clinical Practice
Volume16
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 May 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Authors

Funding

The study was funded by the bariatric unit's research funds at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust (Birmingham, UK).

FundersFunder number
University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust

    Keywords

    • BMI
    • Bariatric surgery
    • COVID-19
    • Metabolic surgery
    • Obesity
    • Obesity surgery
    • Pandemic
    • Resuming Elective surgery
    • SARS-CoV-2

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