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Obes Surg. 2004 Jun-Jul;14(6):725-30.

Bariatric surgery: shedding the monetary weight of prescription costs in the managed care arena.

Author information

1
Department of Gastroenterology and Nutrition, Geisinger Medical Center, 100 N. Academy Avenue, Danville, PA 17822-2111, USA. cpotteiger@geisinger.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Prescription costs for treatment of comorbidities associated with morbid obesity is a considerable annual health-care expenditure. This study addressed the effect of Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGBP) on diabetic and anti-hypertensive pharmaceutical utilization and cost savings at our institution.

METHODS:

Retrospective data from the electronic database of 51 consecutive patients, who underwent RYGBP from March 2001 to May 2002 were studied. Patients had BMI >40 associated with obesity-related diabetes and hypertension. Prescription medications utilized by this cohort were reviewed preoperatively and at 3- and 9-month intervals postoperatively. Significance was analyzed by paired t-test.

RESULTS:

Prevalence of diabetes and hypertension was 55.7% (29/53) and 44.3% (24/53) respectively, and 34% (18/53) patients had both co-morbidities. Preoperatively, patients were on an average of 2.44 +/- 1.86 medications at a cost of 187.24 USD +/- 237.41 USD per month. Postoperatively, the mean number of medications was reduced to 0.56 +/- 0.81 agents (P<0.001) at a monthly cost of 42.53 USD +/- 116.60 (P<0.001).

CONCLUSIONS:

RYGBP can decrease the prescription medication requirements, resulting in significant cost-savings in the treatment of obesity-related hypertension and diabetes. This study found a 77.3% reduction in total cost of diabetic and anti-hypertensive medications.

PMID:
15318973
DOI:
10.1381/0960892041590999
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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