Researchers have suggested that more than half of high-risk drinkers are actually less likely to report high-risk drinking behavior after weight loss surgery.
Lead author and principal investigator Christina Wee, MD, Director of Obesity Research in the Division of General Medicine and Primary Care, and colleagues interviewed patients who participated in the Assessment of Bariatric Surgery or ABS Study, which aims to understand patient preferences and decision making processes about weight loss and weight loss surgery.
They followed 541 clinically obese patients who underwent weight loss surgery, interviewing them at baseline and then twice again at the end of one and two years.
Study participants were asked questions assessing frequency of drinking over the past year, quantity of alcohol consumed on an average daily, and binge drinking over the past month. Results were used to determine which individuals were high-risk drinkers.
About one in six patients reported high-risk drinking before weight loss surgery. At one year after surgery two thirds of gastric bypass patients and nearly half of gastric banding patients reported ceasing high-risk drinking. And at year two "half of gastric bypass and more than half of gastric banding patients reported this improvement," write the authors.
The results have been published in the journal, Surgery for Obesity and Related Diseases.