Pain, physical function improve after weight-loss surgery

New York, April 10 (IANS) People with severe obesity who undergo bariatric surgery are likely to experience improvement in pain, physical function and walking ability, says a study.

The findings revealed that about 50-70 percent of adults experienced clinically significant improvements in perceived bodily pain and physical function and in objectively measured walking capacity.

The study’s “large geographically diverse sample, inclusion of multiple validated measures of pain and physical function, longitudinal design, and follow-up through 3 years make it one of the most informative studies of pain and function following RYGB and LAGB to date,” said Wendy C. King from the University of Pittsburgh in the US.

Severe obesity and excess weight can lead to joint damage and pain, resulting in limitations in walking and restricted other physical activities

The study, published in the journal JAMA, analysed 2,458 participants and was conducted at 10 hospitals. Of the participants, 79 percent were women with the median age 47 years and 2,221 completed baseline and follow-up assessments.

The assessments were conducted prior to surgery and annually thereafter.

Bariatric surgery is effective at achieving and maintaining weight loss, although the variability and durability of improvements in pain and physical function are not well described.

The team examined changes in pain and physical function in the first three years following bariatric surgery and factors associated with improvement, among adults with severe obesity.

Pre-surgery-to-post-surgery reductions in weight and depressive symptoms were associated with improvements in multiple outcomes.

About three-fourth of participants with severe knee and hip pain or disability at baseline experienced improvements in osteoarthritis symptoms.

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