Bariatric Surgery for Adolescents with Severe Obesity Could Lead to Lower Long-Term CVD Risk

Adolescents with severe obesity are considered to be predisposed to a higher risk of a cardiovascular event before the age of 50. Recent research conducted by Justin Ryder, PhD, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Associate Director of Research for the Center for Pediatric Obesity Medicine at the University of Minnesota, suggests that bariatric surgery can help reduce this long-term risk. After bariatric surgery, some weight gain will most likely occur, but Dr. Ryder suggested that the results are sustainable and despite the original cost of the surgery, the effects make it cost-effective. 

Research conducted by Dr. Ryder and his colleagues used the Framingham Heart Study cardiovascular disease (CVD) event model to analyze CVD risk before and after bariatric surgery for a period of time in groups of adolescents with different weights ranging from normal for their age to what is considered severe obesity. The results of the study indicated that the projected cardiovascular event rate and death rates were lower for the adolescents who had bariatric surgery versus those who were severely overweight and did not have the surgery. This work among other studies has indicated how dangerous CVD can be among adolescents and even other age groups who experience severe obesity and that treatments earlier on in life could be beneficial to prevent possibly fatal cardiovascular events.