-- Alan Mozes
THURSDAY, March 1 (HealthDay News) -- Obese chronic kidney
disease patients who undergo surgery to achieve weight loss do not
face a particularly dangerous rate of complications as a result, a
new study suggests.
Although the research team cautioned that more work needs to be
done to establish to what degree the benefits of the weight-loss
surgery -- called "bariatric surgery" -- actually outweigh the
risks among this population, the investigators found that roughly 5
percent to 10 percent of such patients experienced
The upside of such an intervention could be tremendous, the
researchers noted, as obesity can be an impediment to a patient's
ability to undergo a lifesaving kidney transplant.
"This work provides strong evidence that it is safe to proceed with bariatric surgery in kidney failure patients who suffer from obesity," study co-lead author Dr. John Sweeney, from the Emory University School of Medicine, said in a news release from the American Society of Nephrology.
The findings, slated for publication in an upcoming issue of the
Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, stem from an analysis of more than 27,000 patients who had bariatric surgery at some point between 2006 and 2008.
Complications among kidney disease patients varied depending on
the severity of their illness. About 5 percent of those with either
normal kidney function or early disease (stage 1) experienced
complications, while nearly 10 percent of those with more advanced
disease (stage 5) went on to experience postoperative problems, the
The authors suggested that complication rates below 10 percent
should be seen as welcome news, given the difficulty many chronic
kidney disease patients have in losing weight as their ability to
engage in exercise diminishes.
For more on kidney disease, visit the
U.S. National Library of Medicine.
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