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Surg Obes Relat Dis. 2008 May-Jun;4(3):464-71. Epub 2007 Nov 5.

Pregnancy outcomes after bariatric surgery: maternal, fetal, and infant implications.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, Brown Medical School, Rhode Island Hospital, Providence, RI, USA.


Obese women who become pregnant face many health risks, including gestational diabetes, pregnancy-induced hypertension, and pre-eclampsia. These women also have a greater incidence of preterm labor, cesarean sections, and perioperative morbidity. Infants born to obese women have increased rates of macrosomia and congenital anomalies, as well as life-long complications such as obesity and its associated morbidities. With the increase in numbers of weight loss operations being performed in women of child-bearing age, physicians will have to address patient concerns regarding the safety of pregnancy after surgery. Many of the proposed health benefits of weight loss after surgery could translate to decreased rates of complications experienced by obese pregnant women. Case reports and small series have emerged documenting pregnancy courses after bariatric surgery. We reviewed the studies that reported pregnancy outcomes compiled from PubMed and Ovid databases to help draw conclusions regarding the maternal, fetal, and infant safety in women after bariatric surgery. The observations from these studies have shown that the health risks experienced by obese women during pregnancy are reduced after weight loss surgery. Additionally, there does not appear to be any increased risk regarding fetal or infant outcome.

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