Incidence of Gallstone Formation and Cholecystectomy 10 Years After Bariatric Surgery
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- Melmer, A., Sturm, W., Kuhnert, B. et al. OBES SURG (2015) 25: 1171. doi:10.1007/s11695-014-1529-y
Rapid weight loss is a risk factor for gallstone formation, and postoperative treatment options for gallstone formation are still part of scientific discussion. No prospective studies monitored the incidence for gallstone formation and subsequent cholecystectomy after bariatric surgery longer than 5 years. The aim of the study was to determine the incidence of gallstone formation and cholecystectomy in bariatric patients over 10 years.
Materials and methods
One hundred nine patients were observed over 10 years after laparoscopic gastric banding or gastric bypass/gastric sleeve. The incidence of gallstone formation and cholecystectomy was correlated to longitudinal changes in anthropometric parameters.
In total, 91 female and 18 male patients were examined. Nineteen patients had postoperative gallstone formation, and 12 female patients required cholecystectomy. The number needed to harm for gallstone formation was 7.1 and 2.3 cases in the banding group and gastric bypass/gastric sleeve group, respectively. The number needed to harm for cholecystectomy was 11.6 and 2.5 cases in the banding group and the gastric bypass/gastric sleeve group, respectively. Weight loss was higher in patients requiring subsequent cholecystectomy. Mean follow-up to cholecystectomy was 21.5 months with the latest operation after 51 months.
Female gender and rapid weight loss were major risk factors for postoperative cholelithiasis. Ultrasound examinations within 2 to 5 years are recommended in every patient, independent of bariatric procedure. Pharmacologic treatment should be considered in high risk patients within 2 to 5 years to prevent postoperative cholelithiasis. This helps to optimize patient care and lowers postoperative morbidity.