Incidence and Risk Factors for Mortality Following Bariatric Surgery: a Nationwide Registry Study

Nasser Sakran, Shiri Sherf-Dagan, Orit Blumenfeld, Orly Romano-Zelekha, Asnat Raziel, Dean Keren, Itamar Raz, Dan Hershko, Ian M. Gralnek, Tamy Shohat, David Goitein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Background: Although bariatric surgery (BS) is considered safe, concern remains regarding severe post-operative adverse events and mortality. Using a national BS registry, the aim of this study was to assess the incidence, etiologies, and risk factors for mortality following BS. Methods: Prospective data from the National Registry of Bariatric Surgery in Israel (NRBS) including age, gender, BMI, comorbidities, and surgical procedure information were collected for all patients who underwent BS in Israel between June 2013 and June 2016. The primary study outcome was the 3.5-year post-BS mortality rate, obtained by cross-referencing with the Israel population registry. Results: Of the 28,755 patients analyzed (67.3% females, mean age 42.0 ± 12.5 years, and preoperative BMI 42.14 ± 5.21 kg/m2), 76% underwent sleeve gastrectomy (SG), 99.1% of the surgeries were performed laparoscopically, and 50.8% of the surgeries were performed in private medical centers. Overall, 95 deaths occurred during the study period (146.9/100,000 person years). The 30-day rate of post-operative mortality was 0.04% (n = 12). Male gender (HR = 1.94, 95%CI 1.16–3.25), age (HR = 1.06, 95%CI 1.04–1.09), BMI (HR = 1.08, 95%CI 1.05–1.11), and depression (HR = 2.38, 95%CI 1.25–4.52) were independently associated with an increased risk of all-cause 3.5-year mortality, while married status (HR = 0.43, 95%CI 0.26–0.71) was associated with a decreased risk. Conclusion: Mortality after BS is low. Nevertheless, a variety of risk factors including male gender, advanced age, unmarried status, higher BMI, and preoperative depressive disorder were associated with higher mortality rates. Special attention should be given to these “at-risk” BS patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2661-2669
Number of pages9
JournalObesity Surgery
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2018
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature.


  • Bariatric surgery
  • Mortality
  • Registry


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