In a recent study it was found that African-Americans and males lost significant weight after gastric bypass surgery, but not as much as their white and female counterparts.
The study found African-Americans lost about 10 percent less of their excess weight than whites, while men of all races lost 10 percent less than women. Increasing age and higher initial weight were also identified as significant factors in predicting weight loss. Researchers from Einstein Healthcare Network in Philadelphia followed 1,096 gastric bypass patients with at least one-year follow-up. Patients were on average 45-years-old, and had an average body mass index (BMI) of 47.6.
Excess weight loss was 63.2 percent in African-Americans and 71.9 percent in whites, and 63 percent in males, compared to 71 percent in females. Resolution or improvement of obesity-related conditions, including Type 2 diabetes, hypertension and sleep apnea, were similar across all groups.
"The improvements in health status are consistent among all groups, however, for some reason, weight loss itself is variable," said Ramsey M. Dallal, MD, Chief of Bariatric/Minimally Invasive Surgery at Einstein Healthcare Network. "Further study is needed to determine what makes some groups more resistant to weight loss than others. It is likely there are many factors, from genetics to environment."
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, African-American adults have the highest rates of obesity (44.1%) in the United States compared to Hispanics (37.9%) and whites (32.6%).1
About one-third of men and one-third of women are classified as obese.2
Gastric bypass surgery restricts food intake and limits the body''s absorption of calories and nutrients by creating a smaller stomach pouch and bypassing a section of the small intestine.
Alfred Trang, MD from Einstein Healthcare Network was Dr. Dallal''s co-author.