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Operative management of acute abdomen after bariatric surgery in the emergency setting: the OBA guidelines.

BACKGROUND: Patients presenting with acute abdominal pain that occurs after months or years following bariatric surgery may present for assessment and management in the local emergency units. Due to the large variety of surgical bariatric techniques, emergency surgeons have to be aware of the main functional outcomes and long-term surgical complications following the most performed bariatric surgical procedures. The purpose of these evidence-based guidelines is to present a consensus position from members of the WSES in collaboration with IFSO bariatric experienced surgeons, on the management of acute abdomen after bariatric surgery focusing on long-term complications in patients who have undergone laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy and laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass.

METHOD: A working group of experienced general, acute care, and bariatric surgeons was created to carry out a systematic review of the literature following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-analysis Protocols (PRISMA-P) and to answer the PICO questions formulated after the Operative management in bariatric acute abdomen survey. The literature search was limited to late/long-term complications following laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy and laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass.

CONCLUSIONS: The acute abdomen after bariatric surgery is a common cause of admission in emergency departments. Knowledge of the most common late/long-term complications (> 4 weeks after surgical procedure) following sleeve gastrectomy and Roux-en-Y gastric bypass and their anatomy leads to a focused management in the emergency setting with good outcomes and decreased morbidity and mortality rates. A close collaboration between emergency surgeons, radiologists, endoscopists, and anesthesiologists is mandatory in the management of this group of patients in the emergency setting.

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