Weight Loss Surgery May Weaken Bones, study shows

By on December 29, 2015
Weight Loss Surgery May Weaken Bones, study shows

Certain types of bariatric or weight loss surgery aren’t risk-free according to a recently conducted Taiwan-based study. Some surgical procedures may actually make your bones increasingly fragile heightening the risks for fractures.

The research indicated that people who underwent weight loss surgery had a 21 per cent higher risk of breaking a bone over the next five years.

People that had “malabsorptive” procedures – such as a gastric bypass – were almost 50 per cent more likely to experience a fracture.

The scientists revealed that longer bones, such as the ones found in the arms and legs, were more likely to break.

As obese patients lose weight, they also risk losing bone mass along with some muscle.

Doctor Kuo-Chin Huang of the College of Medicine at National Taiwan University in Taipei advised people undergoing this type of surgery should take vitamin D and calcium supplements.

Sun exposure and exercise were also two recommendations given by the lead researcher to prevent osteoporosis.

Despite the risk of brittle bones, Dr Huang pointed out that weight loss surgery provides the patient with immense health benefits.

People who lose 100 to 200lbs can also stop suffering from diabetes, their risk of heart disease and high blood pressure.

Another new study recently highlighted the ‘life-changing’ benefits of weight-loss surgery for the NHS.

It demonstrated that this type of surgery could not only prevent 80,000 cases of high blood pressure, but 40,000 cases of type 2 diabetes and 5,000 heart attacks over four years.

Bariatric surgery involves reducing the size of the stomach through reducing the size of the stomach with a gastric band, removal of a portion of the stomach or re-routing the small intestine to a small stomach pouch.

The study’s authors reveal that weight-loss surgery has increased at least SEVEN-fold worldwide in the past decade.

The NHS advise that these procedures should be the last resort for people who are dangerously obese.

As a cause for concern, the study estimated 15 to 20 per cent of middle-aged Europeans suffer from obesity.

Martha J. Weller

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