Introduction: Multiple studies have shown a patient’s risk of disease including cardiovascular risk and diabetes can be associated with waist:hip ratio. The metabolic syndrome in particular has been associated with an "apple" shape (waist:hip ratio > 0.80 for females, waist:hip ratio > 0.90 for males). Our project was to evaluate body shape change after bariatric surgery as a possible indicator of improved health risks.
Methods: Information was gathered from our clinic patient data base and waist:hip ratios were gathered prospectively. Only laparoscopic bariatric cases were included and all patients were measured by the same nutritionist. Patient’s operated on in between December 2006 to September 2009 were included.
Results: There were 122 bypass, 40 bands, and 4 gastric sleeve patients. Mean BMI was 48.6 (SD=7.8) (n=168). Over the year follow-up 52% of patients were able to stop hypertensive medications, 64% stopped diabetic medications, and 56% stopped hyperlipidemia medications. Excess body weight loss was 33.7lbs (SD=11.9) at 3 months (n=63), 46.35lbs (SD=15.58) at 6 months (n=47) and 52.48lbs (SD=24.19) at one year(n=22). Waist:hip ratios were 0.91 (SD=0.1) pre-op, 0.87 (SD=0.1) at 3 months (P<0.0001), 0.87 (SD=0.09) at 6 months (P<0.0001), 0.86 (SD=0.1) at one year (P=0.0006).
Conclusions: Along with well-known improvement in weight and comorbid conditions bariatric surgery significantly improves body proportion which may decrease medical risk. It is important to continue to follow these patients and determine if this is a long term change or if patients revert to their pre-op waist:hip ratio. Further investigations are also needed to determine if body habitus is associated with better outcome from specific bariatric procedures or comorbid conditions.
Program Number: P034