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Possible Risk of Alcohol Abuse Post Gastric Bypass

| Date Posted: 7/16/2012 | Author: Mandy McCue

It has been a long week at work. You get home, relax and crack open a beer or pour yourself a glass of wine. Most people’s tolerance can handle one drink, but does that change post-surgery? New research published in the June 2012 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association shows an increase in alcohol abuse in post-bariatric surgery patients.

Wendy King, Ph.D., from the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School Of Public Health, and her colleagues observed 2,000 bariatric surgery patients, pre-surgery and 2 years after surgery, who underwent either Gastric Bypass or a gastric banding procedure. Before surgery, 7.6 percent of patients had an alcohol use disorder (AUD) after surgery, 10 percent of patients had an AUD.  The biggest change was with the gastric bypass patients versus the banding procedure.

Gastric bypass surgery shrinks the size of the stomach and attaches it to a lower portion of the intestine. This limits the intake of food and the body’s ability to absorb calories. Researchers also believe it changes how the body metabolizes alcohol causing them to feel the effects quicker with less consumption. (Source: The Associated Press)

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence recommends that patients who undergo weight loss surgery commit to a long-term follow-up treatment program. FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital requires long-term follow up visits beginning two weeks after surgery. It is important to continually monitor your health throughout your lifetime and FirstHealth will provide you with support.

FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital in partnership with Pinehurst Surgical offers comprehensive care when it comes to weight loss and weight-loss surgery. To learn more about weight-loss surgery options attend one of our free bi-monthly bariatric surgery seminars on the first Thursday and the third Monday of every month.  Register for this free weight-loss surgery seminar today!  Or if you have already had weight-loss surgery, FirstHealth offers a Bariatric Support Group following each bi-monthly weight-loss seminar. Our comprehensive Bariatric Surgical Program serves patients in the Pinehurst, Sanford, Raeford, Laurinburg, Lumberton, Troy and Rockingham regions of North Carolina and beyond.  Call (800) 213-3284 with questions or for more information.

Alcohol abuse is a serious problem that affects 76 million people world-wide. If you or someone you know is abusing alcohol, seek help. FirstHealth offers assistance programs or behavioral services. Call (910) 715-3370 for more information. 

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