In a new study, researchers found that women who underwent gastric band surgery to lose weight reported significant improvements in urinary function and quality of life after the operation.
However, men undergoing the procedure did not enjoy the same significant urinary function improvements as the women. They also reported that erectile function was slightly worse after surgery, unlike studies following non-surgical weight loss where sexual function actually improved.
The study surveyed 176 patients - 142 women and 34 men - who had undergone laparoscopic gastric banding surgery (LGB) at a single center in Newcastle, Australia.
The women had an average age of just under 48 years and the men averaged just under 53. The women averaged 118kg before surgery and the men averaged 146kg.
Weight loss following surgery was similar for both sexes, averaging just over 23kgs for the men and just under 23kgs for the women. However the women had a slightly higher BMI loss than the men.
The women in the study reported that weight loss had led to significant improvements in their urinary problems, possibly due to a reduction in intra-abdominal pressure, as soon as three to four months after surgery. And every kilogram lost led to a slight improvement in their quality of life score.
However, the men in the study did not show any improvement when it came to urinary function. Despite the men's significant weight-loss, the overall scores for erectile and orgasmic function declined over time.
The study has been published in the January issue of the urology journal BJUI.