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Early Bowel Obstruction after Bariatric Surgery: An Analysis of the 2020-2021 MBSAQIP Database.

BACKGROUND: The Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program evaluates 30-day outcomes of bariatric cases performed in the United States. The Participant Use File in 2020 introduced bowel obstruction (BO). We compared the rates of BO, risk factors, and postoperative outcomes after laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB), sleeve gastrectomy (SG), and duodenal switch (DS).

METHODS: Retrospective analysis of patients who underwent laparoscopic RYGB, SG, or DS obtained from the 2020-2021 Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program. Patients who underwent either as a primary procedure with a body mass index >35 kg/m2 were selected. Baseline characteristics, operative details, and postoperative complications were collected. The outcome of interest was BO occurring within 30 days.

RESULTS: A total of 205,533 cases of which 148,944 were SG (72.4%), 54,606 were RYGB (26.5%), and 1983 were DS (1%). BO occurred in 0.74%, 0.4%, and 0.03% of patients who underwent an RYGB, DS, or SG, respectively. Patients with a BO in the RYGB group were more likely to be on immunosuppressive therapy (5.4% vs. 1.9%, P<0.001) with longer operative time (136.2 min±58.0 min vs. 117.4 min±53.6 min, P<0.001). SG patients with a BO were older (47.5±13.6 vs. 41.9±11.6, P=0.011) with longer operating times (98.6±63.8 vs. 68.9±33.4, P=0.002). Patients in the RYGB group with a BO had the highest rates of readmissions (71.9%) and reoperations (58.4%).

CONCLUSIONS: Early bowel obstruction is rare after bariatric surgery. It is more common after RYGB and least common after SG. Readmission and reoperation rates were highest in patients with BO in the RYGB group.

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