Morbid obesity is associated with various co-morbidities, including chronic venous insufficiency. Bariatric surgery is the only effective treatment for morbid obesity, but with potential risks and possible complications, including venous thromboembolism.
To determine the prevalence of clinical and ultrasonographic signs of chronic venous insufficiency in morbid obese patients in preparation for bariatric surgery and the incidence of post-operative venous thromboembolic disease.
Patients on work-up for bariatric surgery of Centro Terapêutico Especializado em Fígado (CETEFI) and Pro-Gastro surgical teams of the Hospital Beneficência Portuguesa de São Paulo were included. The analysed data were pre-operative findings for venous insufficiency (CEAP - clinical, etiological, anatomical, physiopathologic - classification and venous ultrassonographic findings), type of surgery (open or laparoscopic), abdominal circumference, body mass index (BMI) and post-operative ultrassonography search for venous insufficiency and deep venous thrombosis.
Between March 2007 and December 2009, 95 patients candidates for bariatric surgery had clinical and duplex scan evaluation of the lower limbs venous system. Of the 95 patients, 53 were submitted to the surgical procedure. There was a predominance of women (77.9%), the average age was 38.5 years, average preoperative weight 124.6 kg and average BMI of 45.5 kg/m2. Regarding obesity, 16.8% were obese, and 83.1% were morbidly obese. In relation to the venous findings, 86.3% of the patients did fit CEAP classification less than 3 and 13.7% greater than or equal to 3. Among the post-operative complications, there were four cases of wound infection. Three patients developed post-operative distal venous thrombosis (7.5%), but no one had clinically manifested pulmonary embolism.
No relation between BMI, CEAP classification and venous ultrassonographic findings were found. Although prophylaxis was used in all patients, the incidence of post-operative distal venous thrombosis was considerably high.
Venous insufficiency; Venous thromboembolism; Bariatric surgery; Morbid obesity