Post Bariatric Surgery Care Guidelines Published
There were an estimated 200,000 bariatric surgeries performed in 2009, according to the Endocrine Society. As the number of patients undergoing weight loss surgeries continues to grow, the society saw the need for standards of care following these procedures, so they created a task force that has published guidelines for post-op bariatric surgery follow-up and monitoring.
The seventeen recommendations were published online in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism by the task force that was headed by David Heber, MD, PhD, of the University of California Los Angeles.
The task force recommends that clinicians should:
- Monitor bone density and serum nutrient levels after bariatric procedures that can reduce nutrient absorption.
- Consider vitamin and mineral supplements for all patients who’ve had weight-loss surgery.
The guidelines also recommend that patients’ postoperative diets should that include 60 to 120 grams of protein per day immediately after surgery and for long-term nutritional management.
The task force wrote:
“To guide patients through the transition to life after bariatric surgery, a multidisciplinary team that includes an experienced primary care physician, endocrinologist, or gastroenterologist should provide care, and patients should consider enrolling postoperatively in a comprehensive program for nutrition and lifestyle management.
“Such support can ease the transition to life after bariatric surgery and may help prevent weight regain.”
The task force also recommended that patients be monitored clinically for nutrient deficiencies; the guidelines included a symptom list for deficiencies in six major vitamins and minerals.
They also called for a more rigorous study of diabetes and other metabolic disorders in bariatric surgery patients in order to obtain better data on long-term outcomes and possible complications.