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Obes Surg. 2005 Feb;15(2):261-5.

Compliance with surgical after-care following bariatric surgery for morbid obesity: a retrospective study.

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  • 1Department of Mental Health, St. George's Hospital and Medical School, London. npoole@sghms.ac.uk



Non-compliant patients fail to match their behavior to the clinical prescription. Laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding requires strict compliance with surgical and dietary advice. Failure to attend follow-up appointments and the persistent consumption of calorie-dense liquid foods are associated with poor weight loss and postoperative complications. Prediction of "poor compliers" would enhance candidate selection and enable specific interventions to be targeted.


9 poor compliers were identified and compared with 9 fully compliant controls. Case-notes were analyzed retrospectively.


Cases were found to graze on foods and eat more in response to negative affects. They were reluctant to undergo psychiatric assessment, viewed the band as responsible for weight loss, and aroused caution in the psychiatric evaluator. Poor compliance was not associated with binge eating, purging, impulsivity or psychiatric illness.


Unrealistic expectations and anxiety are known to predict non-adherence. Constant negative affects may be self-modulated by grazing. The results are explored in the context of Self-efficacy Theory, a socio-cognitive account of illness behavior.

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