Bariatric surgery history among substance abuse treatment patients: prevalence and associated features

Surg Obes Relat Dis. 2010 Nov-Dec;6(6):615-21. doi: 10.1016/j.soard.2009.12.008. Epub 2010 Jan 20.


Background: In 2006, Brighton Hospital (Brighton, Michigan), a comprehensive substance abuse treatment facility, began observing increasing admissions who reported a history of bariatric surgery. Data on the magnitude of this postoperative outcome is lacking. The hospital instituted procedures to better track this variable in the electronic medical records at admission to estimate the prevalence of bariatric surgery history among substance abuse treatment admissions.

Methods: The data analyzed for the present report included the electronic medical record data obtained from 7199 patients admitted from 2006 to 2009 and the chart review data from 54 bariatric patients and 54 controls.

Results: The findings suggested that 2-6% of recent admissions were positive for a bariatric surgery history. The substance abuse treatment patients with a bariatric surgery history were significantly more likely to be women and nonsmokers. The bariatric and nonbariatric patients were equally likely to have been diagnosed with alcohol dependence; however, bariatric patients were significantly more likely to also have a diagnosis of alcohol withdrawal. Relative to the matched control cases, the alcohol-dependent bariatric patients reported consuming a significantly greater maximum quantity of drinks per drinking day.

Conclusion: A bariatric surgery history might be overrepresented in substance use programs and such patients' recovery efforts might pose unique challenges.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alcoholism / epidemiology
  • Bariatric Surgery / psychology
  • Bariatric Surgery / statistics & numerical data*
  • Electronic Health Records
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain, Postoperative / epidemiology
  • Substance Abuse Treatment Centers / statistics & numerical data
  • Substance-Related Disorders / epidemiology*