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Preoperative psychological assessment of patients seeking weight-loss surgery: identifying challenges and solutions

Authors Edwards-Hampton S, Wedin S

Received 21 July 2015

Accepted for publication 3 September 2015

Published 3 November 2015 Volume 2015:8 Pages 263—272


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Professor Igor Elman

Shenelle A Edwards-Hampton,1 Sharlene Wedin2

1Department of General Surgery, Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, Medical Center Boulevard, Winston-Salem, NC, 2Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC, USA

Abstract: Preoperative psychosocial assessment is the standard of care for patients seeking weight-loss surgery (WLS). However, the assessment procedure varies widely by surgery site. Comprehensive assessments can provide a wealth of information that assists both the patient and the treatment team, anticipate and prepare for challenges associated with extensive behavioral and lifestyle changes that are required postsurgery. In this review, we provide an overview of the purpose of the preoperative psychosocial assessment and domains to be included. Challenges commonly identified in the assessment are discussed, including maladaptive eating behaviors, psychiatric comorbidities, and alcohol use. Potential solutions and approaches to these challenges are provided. Additionally, patient populations requiring special consideration are presented to include adolescents, those with cognitive vulnerabilities, and aging adults.

Keywords: bariatric surgery, preoperative assessment, weight-loss surgery, challenges, adolescents, older adults, cognitive impairment, maladaptive eating, alcohol misuse

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