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Complications of Bariatric Surgery: What You Can Expect to See in Your GI Practice

Schulman, Allison R, MD1,2; Thompson, Christopher C, MD, MSc, FASGE, FACG AGAF1,2

American Journal of Gastroenterology: November 2017 - Volume 112 - Issue 11 - p 1640–1655
doi: 10.1038/ajg.2017.241

Obesity is one of the most significant health problems worldwide. Bariatric surgery has become one of the fastest growing operative procedures and has gained acceptance as the leading option for weight-loss. Despite improvement in the performance of bariatric surgical procedures, complications are not uncommon. There are a number of unique complications that arise in this patient population and require specific knowledge for proper management. Furthermore, conditions unrelated to the altered anatomy typically require a different management strategy. As such, a basic understanding of surgical anatomy, potential complications, and endoscopic tools and techniques for optimal management is essential for the practicing gastroenterologist. Gastroenterologists should be familiar with these procedures and complication management strategies. This review will cover these topics and focus on major complications that gastroenterologists will be most likely to see in their practice.

1Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Endoscopy, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, USA

2Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA

Correspondence: Christopher C. Thompson, MD, MSc, FACG, FASGE, AGAF, Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Endoscopy, Brigham and Women's Hospital, 75 Francis St, ASB II, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA. E-mail:

Received 27 January 2017; accepted 27 June 2017

Guarantor of the article: Christopher C. Thompson, MD, MSc, FACG, FASGE, AGAF.

Specific author contributions: Drafting of the manuscript: Allison R. Schulman; this author has approved the final draft submitted. editing of the manuscript: Christopher C. Thompson; this author has approved the final draft submitted.

Financial support: None.

Potential competing interests: C.C. Thompson—Apollo Endosurgery (Consultant/Research Support); Olympus (Consultant/Research Support); Boston Scientific (Consultant); Covidien (Consultant, Royalty, Stock); Medtronic (Consultant, Royalty, Stock); USGI Medical (Consultant/Research Support). The remaining author declares no conflict of interest.

© The American College of Gastroenterology 2017. All Rights Reserved.
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