Bariatric surgery and the OPTIFAST VLCD Program

Bariatric surgery and the OPTIFAST VLCD Program

Surgical intervention by way of bariatric surgery can result in substantial weight loss that is sustained over the long term when combined with education, ongoing monitoring and patient support.

However, features of severe obesity can increase the complexity of the bariatric surgical procedure and may increase the risks of the surgery itself.

Preoperative weight loss is generally recommended to optimise the safety of surgery in obese patients1.  Most studies have shown weight loss before bariatric surgery decreases operating complications, blood loss during surgery and post-surgery hospital stays 2, 3.

VLEDs have often been prescribed pre-surgery when rapid weight loss is indicated and to assist in reducing liver volume. A reduction in liver volume improves abdominal access for the surgeon and reduces the risk of conversion from laparoscopic to an open procedure5. Importantly, weight loss prior to surgery sensitises the patient to the potential benefits of complying with postoperative dietary restrictions.

Preoperative weight loss prior to obesity surgery can be achieved rapidly and safely using the OPTIFAST VLCD Program. The Intensive Level of the OPTIFAST VLCD Program replaces normal dietary intake while maintaining sufficient quantities of protein, carbohydrates and essential fatty acids, as well as vitamins, minerals and trace elements. Short-term usage of the Intensive Level of the OPTIFAST VLCD Program has been shown to produce effective weight loss, resulting in improved health outcomes. Preoperative weight loss does not appear to adversely affect immune function or wound healing post-surgery1, 4

OPTIFAST VLCD may also be required post-bariatric surgery once a patient moves on from clear fluids to full fluids. Using OPTIFAST VLCD Products post-surgery will provide additional protein, vitamins and minerals. Three OPTIFAST VLCD Shakes could be taken daily in place of meals. This will ensure all nutritional requirements are met but low enough in calories to assist with weight loss.

For further information on the management of preoperative weight loss (including pre-bariatric surgery), please refer to the OPTIFAST VLCD Preoperative Protocol.

For information about the use of the OPTIFAST VLCD and Diabetes, please click here.

1.    Pekkarinen, T. and P. Mustajoki, Use of Very Low-Calorie Diet in Preoperative Weight Loss: Efficacy and Safety. Obesity Research, 1997. 5(6): p. 595-602.
2.    Alami, R.S., et al., Is there a benefit to preoperative weight loss in gastric bypass patients? A prospective randomised trial. Surg Obes Relat Dis, 2007. 3(2): p. 141-5; discussion 145-6.
3.    Tarnoff, M., L.M. Kaplan, and S. Shikora, An evidenced-based assessment of preoperative weight loss in bariatric surgery. Obes Surg, 2008. 18(9): p. 1059-61.
4.    Martin, L.F., et al., Can Morbidly Obese Patients Safely Lose Weight Preoperatively? The American Journal of Surgery, 1995. 169: p. 245-253.