Bariatric Surgery Is Efficacious and Improves Access to Transplantation for Morbidly Obese Renal Transplant Candidates

Renana Yemini, Eviatar Nesher, Idan Carmeli, Janos Winkler, Ruth Rahamimov, Eytan Mor, Andrei Keidar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Background: The surgical risk of morbidly obese patients is high and even higher for kidney transplant candidates. A BMI > 35–40 kg/m2 is often a contraindication for that surgery. The safety, feasibility, and outcome of bariatric surgery for those patients are inconclusive. Methods: We conducted a retrospective chart review of prospectively collected data on morbidly obese renal transplant candidates who underwent laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (LSG) or laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (LRYGB) in our institution between January 2009 and September 2017. The reported outcome included body weight and graft status after a mean follow-up of 47 months (range 0.5–5 years). Results: Twenty-four patients (8 females, 16 males, average age 54 years, average preoperative BMI 41 kg/m2 [range 35–51]) underwent LSG (n = 17) or LRYGB (n = 7). Sixteen of them (67%) proceeded to kidney transplantation. Of the 8 pre-transplant and post-bariatric surgery patients, 5 are on the waitlist, and 2 patients died (one of staple line leakage, and one from sepsis unrelated to the bariatric surgery). The average time from bariatric surgery to transplantation was 1.5 years (range 1 month to 4.3 years). The average pre-transplantation BMI was 28 kg/m2 (range 19–36). The mean percentage of excess weight loss was 66% (n = 21), and the total percentage of weight loss was 29% (n = 21). Comorbidities (type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and dyslipidemia) improved significantly following both surgical approaches. Conclusions: LSG and LRYGB appear to effectively address obesity issues before kidney transplantation and improve surgical access. Morbidly obese transplant candidates would benefit from prior bariatric surgery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2373-2380
Number of pages8
JournalObesity Surgery
Issue number8
StatePublished - 15 Aug 2019


  • Bariatric surgery
  • Chronic renal disease
  • Dialysis
  • End-stage renal disease
  • LSG
  • Morbid obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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