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A large percentage of adolescents meet eligibility criteria for metabolic and bariatric surgery (MBS), according to a study published online Feb. 27 in Pediatrics.

Warren L. Shapiro, M.D., from Southern California Permanente Medical Group in San Diego, and colleagues conducted a retrospective cohort study of electronic health record data for 603,051 adolescents aged 13 to 17 years to examine eligibility and characteristics of those who qualify for MBS.
Overall, 22.2 percent of the 603,041 participants evaluated had obesity (12.9, 5.4, and 3.9 percent had class 1, 2, and 3, respectively). The researchers found that gastroesophageal reflux disease, hypertension, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease were the most frequently diagnosed comorbid conditions (3.2, 0.5, and 0.5 percent, respectively).
A total of 9.1 percent of the adolescents with class 2 obesity had one or more comorbidities qualifying them for MBS; the eligibility criteria for MBS were met by 4.4 percent of all adolescents. Male adolescents, Black and Hispanic adolescents, and those living in more deprived neighborhoods were more likely to meet the criteria for MBS in multivariable modeling.
“The large number of eligible adolescents presents challenges for primary care and subspecialty pediatrics, as well as pediatric health care systems,” the authors write. “The availability of MBS needs to be addressed by pediatric specialists and health care systems to determine how to prioritize the best candidates for surgery and make it more widely available to pediatric patients in the community.”

More information:
Warren L. Shapiro et al, Prevalence of Adolescents Meeting Criteria for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, Pediatrics (2024). DOI: 10.1542/peds.2023-063916

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A number of teens meet criteria for metabolic, bariatric surgery: Study (2024, March 8)
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