SAN DIEGO – Significantly greater reductions in weight, body mass index, and adipose tissue were seen in men vs. women who underwent biliopancreatic diversion with duodenal switch surgery, a single-center study indicated.
The study, which was conducted at the Institute of Pneumology and Cardiology at Laval University in Quebec City, was designed to assess the impact of sex on weight loss along with changes in adiposity and skeletal muscle in 42 severely obese men and women who underwent biliopancreatic diversion with duodenal switch (BPD-DS) surgery. Audrey Auclair, a Ph.D. student in pharmacy at the university, presented the study results on behalf of her colleagues at the annual meeting of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.
At baseline and 6 months, the 12 men and 30 women (mean age, 46 years) underwent anthropometric measurements and a midthigh CT scan. At baseline, the men and women were similar in terms of thickness of total, deep, and subcutaneous adipose tissue. However, the men weighed significantly more(mean, 156 vs. 118 kg, respectively), and had a higher body mass index (51.2 vs. 46.2 kg/m2) as well as greater midthigh composition in terms of total muscle (193 vs. 130 cm2), normal-density muscle (115 vs. 79 cm2), and low-density muscle (54 vs. 37 cm2), compared with the women (all P less than.001).
At 6 months, after adjustment for baseline weight, the researchers found that the men had a significantly greater reduction in weight (–30% vs. –26%, respectively), BMI (–30% vs. –26%), subcutaneous adipose tissue (–45% vs. –31%), and deep adipose tissue (–50% vs. –31%) than did the women (all P less than or equal to .05). There were no significant differences between the sexes in the percent decline at 6 months in total muscle, normal-density muscle, and low-density muscle.
"The BPD-DS has a major impact on weight and on both thigh muscle and fat mass in both sexes," Ms. Auclair concluded.
In a later interview, she speculated that the outcome differences between sexes may be attributable to greater physical activity among men compared with women, which would explain a similar loss in midthigh muscle between the sexes, despite a greater reduction in body weight and midthigh adipose tissue among men.
"In order to confirm this hypothesis, we plan to begin a new study to determine the effectiveness of a supervised exercise program on the maintenance of muscle mass in months after the BPD-DS," she said.
Ms. Auclair said that she had no relevant financial conflicts to disclose.