Bariatric surgery improves subclinical myocardial function


  • Mary Corcoran
  • Univadis Medical News
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The benefits of bariatric surgery for obese individuals go beyond weight loss, and extend to improving subclinical myocardial function, according to a study presented at EuroEcho 2019, a scientific congress of the European Society of Cardiology last week. 

For the study, researchers evaluated changes in subclinical left ventricular (LV) myocardial function following bariatric surgery in 38 obese individuals, with and without diabetes (surgery group); 19 patients, matched for age and sex, who remained on the surgical waiting list (conservative group); and 18 age- and sex-matched non-obese controls. Measurements at baseline and at six months included echocardiography, body weight, blood pressure, blood lipids and blood glucose.

While obese patients had worse subclinical heart function than healthy weight controls before surgery, at six months, subclinical heart function was similar in both groups.

Twenty-two patients (58%) in the surgery group showed abnormal global longitudinal strain (GLS) at the start of the study, which normalised in 82 per cent of patients after surgery. In contrast, subclinical disease worsened in 53 per cent of patients on the waiting list during the same period. 

The study also suggests surgery has additional benefits for type 2 diabetes, hypertension and dyslipidaemia.