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J Gastrointest Surg. 2008 Apr;12(4):668-74. doi: 10.1007/s11605-008-0465-3. Epub 2008 Jan 29.

Complications and functional results after ileoanal pouch formation in obese patients.

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  • 1Department of Colorectal Surgery, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Desk A30, 9500 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44122, USA.



Ileoanal pouch formation (IPAA) can be technically challenging in obese patients, and there is little data evaluating results after the procedure in these patients. We compare outcomes for patients with a body mass index (BMI) > or =30 undergoing IPAA when compared with those for patients with BMI <30.


Retrospective analysis of prospectively accrued data for patients with BMI > or =30 undergoing IPAA. Patient and disease-related characteristics, complications, long-term function, and quality of life (QOL) using the Cleveland Global Quality of Life scale (CGQL) were determined for this group of patients (group B) and compared with those for patients with BMI <30 (group A). Kruskal-Wallis and Wilcoxon rank sum tests were used to compare quantitative or ordinal data and chi-square or Fisher's exact tests for categorical variables. Long-term mortality and complication rates were estimated using the Kaplan-Meier method with group comparisons performed using log rank tests.


There were 345 patients (median BMI 32.7) in group B and 1,671 patients in group A. When the cumulative risk of complications over 15 years was compared, group B patients had a significantly higher chance of getting a complication (94.9% vs 88%, p = 0.006). The rates of pelvic sepsis (6.7% vs 5.3%, p = 0.3), pouchitis (58.1 vs 54.4%, p = 0.9), pouch failure (6% vs 4.5%, p = 0.9), and hemorrhage (5.6% vs 4.8%, p = 0.7) were similar for group B and group A. Group B patients, however, had a significantly higher risk of the development of wound infection (18.8% vs 8.1%, p < 0.001) and anastomotic separation (10.4% vs 5.4%, p < 0.001), whereas group A patients had a higher rate of development of obstruction over time (26.7% vs 22.3%, p = 0.02). Long-term outcome including QOL and function after 15 years was comparable between groups.


Although technically demanding, IPAA can be undertaken in obese patients with acceptable morbidity. Good long-term functional results and QOL that is comparable to nonobese patients may be anticipated.

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