Purpose of review: Individuals with morbid obesity benefit from bariatric surgery with respect to weight loss and decreases in obesity-related somatic disorders. This paper focuses on psychosocial outcomes and provides a narrative review of recent meta-analyses and controlled studies concerning postoperative depression and suicide.
Recent findings: Considerable evidence shows short- and medium-term improvement in depressive symptoms after surgery. However, a subgroup of patients exhibits erosion of these improvements or new onset of depression in the long run. Some studies have found an increased risk for suicide among postoperative patients. Prospective longitudinal examinations of factors contributing to the increased risk for postoperative depression and suicide and the interaction between these factors are warranted. The inclusion of mental health professionals in bariatric teams would help to monitor patients for negative psychosocial outcomes and to identify those patients who are vulnerable to depression, suicide, and any other forms of deliberated self-harm following surgery.
Keywords: Bariatric surgery; Depression; Obesity; Suicide.