Current evidence recommends postoperative dietary counselling with a registered dietitian (RD) for successful outcomes after bariatric surgery (BS), however; there is limited data in the GCC region. This study evaluated the effects of the number of postoperative dietitian visits on nutritional outcomes including weight loss and micronutrient deficiencies.
BS procedures between September-2015 and June-2020 were retrospectively reviewed. Demographics, weight loss, micronutrients and number of RD visits post-op were evaluated. Linear mixed-effects modelling was used to estimate the effect of dietician visits on the improvement of outcomes. Changes between baseline and at 12-months were compared by the number of RD visits.
220 patients were included with a mean age of 40 years. 162 (73.6%) were female. Mean body mass Index before surgery was 42.8 kg/m2. Number of RD visits were as follows: 0-1 (39 patients), 2 (59 patients), 3 (55 patients) and 4 or more (67 patients). Baseline micronutrient were normal. In comparison to the reference group, patients with 3 RD visits post-op had 7.38% higher total body weight loss (%TBWL) (p<0.001) and maintained micronutrients within normal range at 12 months post-op. Mean differences of post-op values were statistically significant (p<0.05) for weight, vitamin B12 and vitamin D but not for the remaining micronutrients (Table 1).
Our study suggests that 3 or more dietitian visits during the first 12 months post-op are associated with improved outcomes including significant %TBWL and no micronutrient deficiencies. Larger trials with different practices and geographic variation are needed to validate this data.