Background: Obesity is an independent risk factor of development and progression of chronic kidney disease (CKD). Data on the benefits of bariatric surgery in obese patients with impaired kidney function have been conflicting.
Objective: To explore whether there is improvement in glomerular filtration rate (GFR), proteinuria or albuminuria after bariatric surgery.
Methods: We comprehensively searched the databases of MEDLINE, Embase, web of science and Cochrane for randomized, controlled trials and observational studies that examined bariatric surgery in obese subjects with impaired kidney function. Outcomes included the pre- and post-bariatric surgery GFR, proteinuria and albuminuria. In obese patients with hyperfiltration, we draw conclusions from studies using measured GFR (inulin or iothalamate clearance) unadjusted for BSA only. Study quality was evaluated using the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale.
Results: 32 observational studies met our inclusion criteria, and 30 studies were included in the meta-analysis. No matter in dichotomous data or in dichotomous data, there were statistically significant reduction in hyperfiltration, albuminuria and proteinuria after bariatric surgery.
Limitations: The main limitation of this meta-analysis is the lack of randomized controlled trials (RCTs). Another limitation is the lack of long-term follow-up.
Conclusions: Bariatric surgery could prevent further decline in renal function by reducing proteinuria, albuminuria and improving glomerular hyperfiltration in obese patients with impaired renal function. However, whether bariatric surgery reverses CKD or delays ESRD progression is still in question, large, randomized prospective studies with a longer follow-up are needed.