Importance: Achieving a body mass index (BMI, calculated as weight in kilograms divided by height in meters squared) of less than 30 is an important goal of bariatric surgery, given the increased risk for weight-related morbidity and mortality with a BMI above this threshold.
Objective: To identify predictors for achieving a BMI of less than 30 after bariatric surgery.
Design, setting, and participants: This retrospective study used data from the Michigan Bariatric Surgery Collaborative, a statewide quality improvement collaborative that uses a prospectively gathered clinical data registry. A total of 27 320 adults undergoing primary bariatric surgery between June 2006 and May 2015 at teaching and nonteaching hospitals in Michigan were included.
Exposure: Bariatric surgery.
Main outcomes and measures: Logistic regression was used to identify predictors for achieving a BMI of less than 30 at 1 year after surgery. Secondary outcome measures included 30-day postoperative complications and 1-year self-reported comorbidity remission.
Results: A total of 9713 patients (36%; mean [SD] age, 46.9 [11.3] years; 16.6% male) achieved a BMI of less than 30 at 1 year after bariatric surgery. A significant predictor for achieving this goal was a preoperative BMI of less than 40 (odds ratio [OR], 12.88; 95% CI, 11.71-14.16; P < .001). Patients who had a sleeve gastrectomy, gastric bypass, or duodenal switch were more likely to achieve a BMI of less than 30 compared with those who underwent adjustable gastric banding (OR, 8.37 [95% CI, 7.44-9.43]; OR, 21.43 [95% CI, 18.98-24.19]; and OR, 82.93 [95% CI, 59.78-115.03], respectively; P < .001). Only 8.5% of patients with a BMI greater than 50 achieved a BMI of less than 30 after bariatric surgery. Patients who achieved a BMI of less than 30 had significantly higher reported rates of medication discontinuation for hyperlipidemia (60.7% vs 43.2%, P < .001), diabetes (insulin: 67.7% vs 50.0%, P < .001; oral medications: 78.5% vs 64.3%, P < .001), and hypertension (54.7% vs 34.6%, P < .001), as well as a significantly higher rate of sleep apnea remission (72.5% vs 49.3%, P < .001) and higher satisfaction rate (92.8% vs 78.0%, P < .001) compared with patients who did not.
Conclusions and relevance: Patients with a preoperative BMI of less than 40 are more likely to achieve a BMI of less than 30 after bariatric surgery and are more likely to experience comorbidity remission. Policies and practice patterns that delay bariatric surgery until the BMI is 50 or greater can result in significantly inferior outcomes.