WEDNESDAY, Dec. 2, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Adolescents with obesity undergoing sleeve gastrectomy (SG) have a decrease in lumbar volumetric bone mineral density (vBMD), which is associated with increased lumbar marrow adipose tissue (MAT), according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America, held virtually from Nov. 29 to Dec. 5.

Miriam A. Bredella, M.D., from Harvard Medical School in Boston, and colleagues examined 52 adolescents with moderate-to-severe obesity: 26 followed before and 12 months after SG and 26 nonsurgical controls followed for 12 months.

The researchers found that adolescents who underwent SG lost 34 ± 13 kg, while there was no significant weight change in the control group. Compared with controls, there was a significant decrease in vBMD measured by quantitative computed tomography in the SG group. Within the SG group, there was an increase in lumbar MAT; compared with controls, the difference was not significant. Compared with controls, the SG group had a significant decrease in MAT content of the femur and tibia. An inverse association was seen between 12-month change in lumbar vBMD and lumbar MAT; no association was seen between the change in vBMD and peripheral MAT.

“Adolescents who underwent sleeve gastrectomy had bone loss and an increase in bone marrow fat, despite marked loss of body fat,” Bredella said in a statement. “While weight-loss surgery is successful for weight loss and improving metabolic disorders, it has negative effects on bone.”

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