According to a study, obesity treatments in the US are increasingly including weight-loss procedures for adolescents. The research, which was published in JAMA Paediatrics, revealed that since 2016, more children aged 10 to 19 have undergone metabolic and bariatric surgeries.
The frequency of weight-loss procedures performed on young people increased by 19% between 2020 and 2021. “This data shows us that adolescents and their families are indeed interested in pursuing surgery as a treatment option if they are given access and are a good candidate,” Sarah Messiah, professor and paediatric obesity researcher at UTHealth Houston School of Public Health, was quoted as saying by CNN Health.
Making alterations to the digestive tract is a component of bariatric surgery, which includes gastric bypass and other weight-loss procedures. When diet and exercise have failed or you are experiencing major health issues as a result of your weight, bariatric surgery is performed.
The study found that the underutilization of these weight-loss operations was due to access challenges, such as low referral rates from paediatricians and inadequate insurance coverage. However, the American Academy of Paediatrics released updated recommendations for the management of obesity earlier this year, marking the first revision in 15 years.
For the first time, surgery and drugs are advised for some young individuals under the new recommendations, which also promote timely use of behavioural therapy and lifestyle adjustments. The report recommended that teenagers with significant obesity, in particular, be assessed for surgery.