Factors Associated with the Development of Anemia During Pregnancy After Sleeve Gastrectomy



Nutritional deficiencies, particularly anemia, are commonly encountered following bariatric surgery. While anemia during pregnancy is associated with various adverse maternal and perinatal outcomes, the factors associated with its occurrence following bariatric surgery have not been established. We explored the factors associated with the development of anemia during pregnancy after laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (SG).

Materials and Methods

We reviewed the records of women who underwent SG and delivered during 2010–2018 in a single university hospital.


Of 121 women, 68 (56.2%) had evidence of anemia (hemoglobin < 11.0 g/dL) prior to delivery, with significantly lower hemoglobin levels compared with those (n = 53) without anemia (median 9.9 vs. 11.4 g/dL, P < 0.001). Significantly lower hemoglobin levels were found among those with pre-delivery anemia, both at the pre-operative stage (median 12.9 vs. 13.3 g/dL, P = 0.02) and at early pregnancy (median 12.0 vs. 12.6 g/dL, P = 0.05), compared with those without anemia. In multivariate analysis, a lower pre-operative hemoglobin level was the only independent factor associated with pre-delivery anemia (OR (95% CI) 1.59 (1.05, 2.40), P = 0.03). The rate of blood transfusion was significantly higher in women with pre-delivery anemia than in women without anemia (7.4% vs. 0, P = 0.04).


Anemia during pregnancy after SG was common; pre-operative hemoglobin level was identified as an independent predictor of its occurrence. Efforts should be invested to implement anemia risk stratification before surgery among reproductive-age women, and to optimize maternal nutritional status prior to pregnancy, as well as during the prenatal course.

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Author information




AR, TBP, RE, SSD, GL, MR, NS, and RW reviewed the literature and wrote the paper. AR and TBP collected the data. SSD and TBP performed the data analysis. All the authors read and approved the final manuscript.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Amihai Rottenstreich.

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Ben-Porat, T., Elazary, R., Sherf-Dagan, S. et al. Factors Associated with the Development of Anemia During Pregnancy After Sleeve Gastrectomy. OBES SURG 30, 3884–3890 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11695-020-04730-x

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  • Bariatric surgery
  • Sleeve gastrectomy
  • Pregnancy
  • Anemia
  • Risk factors