Effect of Bariatric Surgery on Intima Media Thickness: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Tannaz Jamialahmadi, Željko Reiner, Mona Alidadi, Wael Almahmeed, Prashant Kesharwani, Khalid Al-Rasadi, Ali H. Eid, Manfredi Rizzo, Amirhossein Sahebkar*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Obesity, and in particular extreme obesity, as a global health problem is an important risk factor for many diseases, including atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ACVD). Bariatric surgery might stop or slow atherogenesis by decreasing excessive weight in the early stages of atherogenesis, by suppressing low-grade systemic inflammation as well as by inhibiting oxidative stress and endothelial dysfunction. The aim of this meta-analysis was to provide an answer to whether bariatric surgery has a significant effect on intima-media thickness (IMT) which is a surrogate marker of early atherosclerosis and has a good correlation with atherosclerotic coronary heart disease. Methods: A systematic literature search in PubMed, Scopus, Embase, and Web of Science as well as grey literature was performed from inception to 1 July 2022. The meta-analysis was performed using Comprehensive Meta-Analysis (CMA) V3 software. Overall, the estimate of effect size was measured by a random effects meta-analysis. To account for the heterogeneity of studies regarding study design, characteristics of the populations, and treatment duration, a random-effects model (using the DerSimonian–Laird method) and the generic inverse variance weighting approach were used. To assess the existence of publication bias in the meta-analysis, the funnel plot, Begg’s rank correlation, and Egger’s weighted regression tests were used. Results: The meta-analysis of 30 trials, including 1488 subjects, demonstrated a significant decrease in IMT after bariatric surgery. The reduction in IMT was also robust in the leave-one-out sensitivity analysis. It must be stressed that the results of the random-effects meta-regression did not suggest any relationship between the changes in IMT and delta body mass index (BMI) or duration of follow-up after the bariatric surgery. However, the subgroup analyses showed a better IMT reduction after laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (LSG) when compared to Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB). Within a year, the IMT follow-up values showed a further improvement. Conclusions: Bariatric surgery significantly reduced IMT. Significant associations were found between the surgery type and IMT changes, as well as a significant effect of follow-up duration on the changes of IMT after bariatric surgery.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6056
JournalJournal of Clinical Medicine
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022


  • atherosclerosis
  • bariatric surgery
  • coronary heart disease
  • intima-media thickness
  • meta-analysis
  • obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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