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18-04-2010 | Article

Bariatric surgery reduces hypertensive disorders in pregnancy


Journal abstract

MedWire News: Study results show that obese women who undergo bariatric surgery have a 75 percent lower risk for developing hypertensive disorders during pregnancy if they undergo the surgery before, rather than after giving birth.

Wendy Bennett (The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, USA) and colleagues reviewed US insurance claims data for 585 women with class II or III obesity aged 16-45 years, who had undergone bariatric surgery, and who had given birth at least once.

They compared the incidence of hypertensive disorders during pregnancies before and after surgery.

Among women who delivered before surgery, 14.5 percent had pre-eclampsia or eclampsia, compared with just 3.0 percent of women who delivered after surgery.

Additionally, compared with women who delivered after surgery, rates of gestational hypertension and chronic hypertension complicating pregnancy were higher in the women who delivered before surgery at, 13.0 versus 2.5 percent, and 13.8 versus 5.4 percent, respectively.

Even after adjusting for potential confounders, women who delivered after surgery still had substantially lower rates of pre-eclampsia, eclampsia, chronic hypertension complicating pregnancy, and gestational hypertension.

“Treating class II or III obesity with bariatric surgery before conception could reduce short-term perinatal morbidity and longer term risks for chronic disease,” conclude Bennett and team.

MedWire ( is an independent clinical news service provided by Current Medicine Group, a trading division of Springer Healthcare Limited. © Springer Healthcare Ltd; 2010

By Sarah Guy