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Obesity (Silver Spring). 2016 Jan;24(1):60-70. doi: 10.1002/oby.21322. Epub 2015 Dec 6.

Long-term health-related quality of life in bariatric surgery patients: A systematic review and meta-analysis.

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Faculty of Medicine, Memorial University, Health Sciences Centre, St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada.
School of Pharmacy, Memorial University, Health Sciences Centre, St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada.



Bariatric surgery results in significant weight loss in the majority of patients. Improvement in health-related quality of life (HRQoL) is an equally important outcome; however, there are few studies reporting long-term (≥5 years) HRQoL outcomes. This study assesses the quality of evidence and effectiveness of surgery on HRQoL ≥ 5 years.


PubMed, Cochrane Review, EmBase, CINANL, PsycInfo, obesity conference abstracts, and reference lists were searched. Keywords were bariatric surgery, obesity, and quality of life. Studies were included if (1) there was ≥5 years follow-up, (2) patients had class II or III obesity, (3) individuals completed a validated HRQoL survey, and (4) there was a nonsurgical comparison group with obesity. Two reviewers independently assessed each study.


From 1376 articles, 9 studies were included in the systematic review (SR) and 6 in the meta-analysis (MA). Inconsistent results for long-term improvements in physical and mental health emerged from the SR. In contrast, the MA found significant improvements in these domains ≥5 years after surgery.


Study findings provide evidence for a substantial and significant improvement in physical and mental health favoring the surgical group compared with controls spanning 5 to 25 years after surgery.

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