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Study confirms link between obesity and complications from body-contouring procedure

Article-Study confirms link between obesity and complications from body-contouring procedure

Hershey, Pa. — A recent study appears to confirm an increase in the occurrence of complications of body-contouring surgery commensurate with patients’ degree of obesity, reports news source Medical News Today.

Medical News Today quotes senior author Donald Mackay, M.D., of Penn State’s College of Medicine in Hershey, as saying, “Obesity is a significant risk factor when considering operative procedures, particularly due to secondary conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, sleep apnea, cardiovascular disease and poor healing that generally accompany it.”

Dr. Mackay’s study retrospectively reviewed 129 patients who had undergone a single body-contouring procedure in 1993 and 2002. Patients were categorized based on their body mass index (BMI) into groups including ideal (BMI less than 25), overweight (BMI 25-30), obese (BMI 31-35), morbidly obese (BMI 36-40), and severely morbidly obese (BMI more than 41). Complications were recorded in “minor” and “major” categories, minor including post-operative seromas or hematomas in or around the wound, major including wounds requiring dressing changes, re-admission or prolonged admission, need for re-operation or death.

Of the total number of patients, three in the ideal group experienced either minor or major complications, as compared with six in the overweight group, 10 in the obese group, eight in the morbidly obese group and 22 in the severely morbidly obese group.

In addition, the study revealed a statistically significant link between higher BMI and increased number of complications and poor outcomes. Minor complications increased from 3.3 percent in the ideal weight group to 46.9 percent in the severely morbidly obese group, while major complications increased from 6.6 percent in the ideal weight group to 43.7 percent in the severely morbidly obese group.

The study appears in the July/August issue of the Aesthetic Surgery Journal.

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