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J Plast Surg Hand Surg. 2014 Oct;48(5):334-9. doi: 10.3109/2000656X.2014.886582. Epub 2014 Feb 10.

Obesity and early complications following reduction mammaplasty: an analysis of 4545 patients from the 2005-2011 NSQIP datasets.

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Division of Plastic Surgery, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania , Philadelphia, PA , USA.


Reduction mammoplasty is a proven treatment for symptomatic macromastia, but the association between obesity and early postoperative complications is unclear. The purpose of this study was to perform a population level analysis in an effort to determine the impact of obesity on early complications after reduction mammaplasty. This study examined the 2005-2011 NSQIP datasets and identified all patients who underwent reduction mammoplasty. Patients were then categorised according to the World Health Organisation obesity classification. Demographics, comorbidities, and perioperative risk factors were identified among the NSQIP variables. Data was then analysed for surgical complications, wound complications, and medical complications within 30 days of surgery. In total, 4545 patients were identified; 54.4% of patients were obese (BMI > 30 kg/m(2)), of which 1308 (28.8%) were Class I (BMI = 30-34.9 kg/m(2)), 686 (15.1%) were Class II (BMI = 35-39.9 kg/m(2)), and 439 (9.7%) were Class III (BMI > 40 kg/m(2)). The presence of comorbid conditions increased across obesity classifications (p < 0.001), with significant differences noted in all cohort comparisons except when comparing class I to class II (p = 0.12). Early complications were rare (6.1%), with superficial skin and soft tissue infections accounting for 45.8% of complications. Examining any complication, a significant increase was noted with increasing obesity class (p < 0.001). This was further isolated when comparing morbidly obese patients to non-obese (p < 0.001), class I (p < 0.001), and class II (p = 0.01) patients. This population-wide analysis - the largest and most heterogeneous study to date - has demonstrated that increasing obesity class is associated with increased early postoperative complications. Morbidly obese patients are at the highest risk, with complications occurring in nearly 12% of this cohort.


American College of Surgeons - National Surgical Quality Improvement Program; Breast reduction; NSQIP; obesity

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