Prehabilitation for Bariatric Surgery: A Randomized, Controlled Trial Protocol and Pilot Study

Nutrients. 2021 Aug 24;13(9):2903. doi: 10.3390/nu13092903.


Bariatric surgery is the most efficacious treatment for obesity, though it is not free from complications. Preoperative conditioning has proved beneficial in various clinical contexts, but the evidence is scarce on the role of prehabilitation in bariatric surgery. We describe the protocol and pilot study of a randomized (ratio 1:1), parallel, controlled trial assessing the effect of a physical conditioning and respiratory muscle training programme, added to a standard 8-week group intervention based on therapeutical education and cognitive-behavioural therapy, in patients awaiting bariatric surgery. The primary outcome is preoperative weight-loss. Secondary outcomes include associated comorbidity, eating behaviour, physical activity, quality of life, and short-term postoperative complications. A pilot sample of 15 participants has been randomized to the intervention or control groups and their baseline features and results are described. Only 5 patients completed the group programme and returned for assessment. Measures to improve adherence will be implemented and once the COVID-19 pandemic allows, the clinical trial will start. This is the first randomized, clinical trial assessing the effect of physical and respiratory prehabilitation, added to standard group education and cognitive-behavioural intervention in obese patients on the waiting list for bariatric surgery. Clinical Trial Registration: NCT0404636.

Keywords: bariatric surgery; obesity; prehabilitation; preoperative exercise; respiratory training.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial Protocol

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Bariatric Surgery / adverse effects*
  • Breathing Exercises / methods
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy / methods
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Education as Topic
  • Pilot Projects
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology*
  • Postoperative Complications / etiology
  • Postoperative Complications / prevention & control
  • Preoperative Care / methods*
  • Preoperative Exercise*
  • Quality of Life
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Weight Loss