Beyond medical complications, people with obesity experience dramatic impairment of quality of life, including adverse workplace effects. Obesity results in weight-based discrimination and a high rate of unemployment because of work disability, absenteeism, loss of productivity, and cost. A few studies have been performed to assess the relationship between obesity surgery and the workplace, finding an improvement in weekly working hours and productivity and a decrease in absenteeism, days of sick leave, and state benefit claims. However, the results are still controversial concerning the overall employment rate.
This study aimed to compare the employment rate before and 2 years after obesity surgery and to evaluate the difference in weight loss between worker and nonworker patients.
Participants were recruited from a tertiary care university hospital in France.
The 2-year outcomes of all patients who underwent obesity surgery between 2010 and 2015 were retrospectively reviewed. The employment status was recorded preoperatively and postoperatively. Retired or permanently disabled patients were excluded from the analysis.
Preoperatively, 158 of 238 patients were employed compared with 199 of 238 postoperatively (P < .0001). There was no difference in weight loss between the worker and nonworker patients regarding the percentage of excess weight loss and the change in body mass index.
This study supports the finding that bariatric surgery also has a positive impact on the professional sphere, providing the opportunity for unemployed patients to return to work.
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Published online: July 19, 2018
Accepted: June 29, 2018
Received in revised form: June 18, 2018
Received: May 2, 2018
© 2018 American Society for Bariatric Surgery. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.