Suicides following bariatric surgery for the treatment of obesity

Surg Obes Relat Dis. Jul-Aug 2005;1(4):447-9. doi: 10.1016/j.soard.2005.04.003. Epub 2005 Jun 14.


The proportion of the United States population living with bariatric surgery has increased exponentially since the mid 1990s. It is pertinent to study and understand the mortality patterns of this emergent population cohort and determine the role bariatric surgery may play in these mortality patterns. We present the forensic and clinical characteristics of three cases of suicide following bariatric surgery for the treatment of morbid obesity. The clinical history in each case included recurrent major depressive disorder before and after surgery. Surgery-suicide intervals were 12 months, 27 months and 26 months, respectively. Pre-surgery and pre-mortem body mass indices were 37.7 and 22.2 kg/m(2); 42.0 and 25.0 kg/m(2); 39.5 and 29.4 kg/m(2). Depressive disorder may persist in the bariatric surgery patient despite successful surgical control of obesity.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Depressive Disorder, Major / psychology*
  • Female
  • Gastric Bypass / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity, Morbid / psychology*
  • Obesity, Morbid / surgery*
  • Suicide*