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Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2009 Sep-Oct;31(5):414-21. doi: 10.1016/j.genhosppsych.2009.05.004. Epub 2009 Jul 21.

Psychiatric disorders in bariatric surgery candidates: a review of the literature and results of a German prebariatric surgery sample.

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  • 1Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University Hospital of Erlangen, Erlangen, Germany.



To investigate the prevalence of Axis I psychopathology in bariatric surgery candidates and to compare our results with the findings of the few studies published thus far.


Structured clinical interviews (SCID) were conducted in 146 consecutive bariatric surgery candidates [71.9% women; mean age: 38.7 years (S.D.=10.0); mean BMI: 49.3 kg/m(2) (S.D.=7.8)] between September 2004 and January 2007 at the University Hospital of Erlangen. Assessments were administered independently of the preoperative screening and approval process.


The overall prevalence of current Axis I disorders was 55.5%; 72.6% had a lifetime history of at least one Axis I disorder. Axis I psychopathology was related to gender (with women reporting higher prevalence rates) and was positively associated with a lifetime history of any eating disorder. We compared our results with the findings of the three published studies having used structured clinical interviews to assess psychiatric comorbidity in bariatric surgery candidates. The authors provide an overview of evidence so far and highlight some details in the assessment and comparisons of different samples in different countries.


About one half of the bariatric surgery candidates in Germany presented with a current Axis I disorder. Prevalence rates reported in the literature so far are based on different premises. Details for example about the evaluation should be taken into account when interpreting the results.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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