Predictors of complication and suboptimal weight loss after laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass: a series of 188 patients

Arch Surg. 2003 May;138(5):541-5; discussion 545-6. doi: 10.1001/archsurg.138.5.541.


Hypothesis: An analysis of patients undergoing laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) may identify factors predictive of complication and of suboptimal weight loss.

Design: Inception cohort.

Setting: Metropolitan university hospital.

Patients: One hundred eighty-eight consecutive patients with severe obesity who met National Institutes of Health consensus guidelines for bariatric surgery.

Interventions: Laparoscopic RYGB.

Main outcome measures: Complications requiring therapeutic intervention and percentage of excess body weight lost at 1 year after surgery.

Results: Of the 188 patients who underwent laparoscopic RYGB, 50 (26.6%) developed complications that required an invasive therapeutic intervention, including 2 deaths. The average follow-up was 351 days (range, 89-1019 days). Multivariate analysis by stepwise logistic regression identified surgeon experience, sleep apnea (P =.003; odds ratio, 3.0; 95% confidence interval, 1.3-7.1), and hypertension (P =.07; odds ratio, 2.0; 95% confidence interval, 1.0-4.0) as predictors of complications. The most common complication requiring therapeutic intervention was stricture at the gastrojejunal anastomosis, occurring in 27 patients (14.4%). Of the 115 patients who underwent surgery more than 1 year previously, 1-year follow-up data were available for 93 (81%). The body mass index (weight in kilograms divided by the square of height in meters) decreased from 53 +/- 8 preoperatively to 35 +/- 6 at 1 year. The mean +/- SD percentage of excess body weight lost at 1 year was 61% +/- 14%. Diabetes mellitus was negatively correlated with percentage of excess body weight lost at 1 year (P =.06).

Conclusions: Surgeon experience, sleep apnea, and hypertension are associated with complications after laparoscopic RYGB. Diabetes mellitus may be associated with poorer postoperative weight loss.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anastomosis, Roux-en-Y
  • Clinical Competence
  • Constriction, Pathologic
  • Female
  • Gastric Bypass* / adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Laparoscopy
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Period
  • Weight Loss*