West Virginia University Metabolic and Weight Loss Surgery Program requires that potential patients who demonstrate psychosocial distress (e.g., a diagnosable psychiatric disorder) complete an intervention before being cleared for bariatric surgery. This study compares 6- and 12-month weight loss in this group and those who did not require an intervention.


Bariatric surgery patients were cleared for surgery and follow-up data were collected at 6- (n=172) and 12-months (n=132), post-surgery. Descriptive statistics were derived and a generalized linear model (GLM) tested the associations between initial clearance status (intervention/no intervention) and percent excess BMI loss (%EBMIL) at 6-months controlling for age, sex, race, the clinician conducting the evaluation, and surgery type (sleeve gastrectomy [SG]/Roux-en-Y gastric bypass). A separate model tested the association between clearance status and %EBMIL at 12-months and included the same covariates.


Patients with 6-months post-surgical weight data were white (97.7%), mostly female (77.9%), and middle-aged (M=43.88, SD=18.67) and had a mean pre-surgical BMI of 44.07 (SD=5.58). Most patients received initial surgery clearance (69.2%), SG (62.2%), and the %EBMIL was 41.95% (SD=18.66). The 12-month sample was sociodemographically and clinically similar; the %EBMIL was 50.54 (SD=24.98). GLMs showed that those who required an intervention had a lower %EBMIL at 6- and 12-months, but the differences were not significant (6-month adjusted means: 38.83% vs. 43.35%, p=0.10; 12-month adjusted means: 48.46% vs. 51.48%, p=0.46).


In general, at 6- and 12-months post-surgery, all patients lost weight and clearance status was not a significant predictor of weight loss success.