Prevalence of Alcohol Use Disorder Symptoms Increased after Bariatric Surgery
Bariatric surgery can alter alcohol pharmacokinetics, and there have been anecdotal reports that patients are at higher risk for alcohol use disorders (AUDs) after such surgery. In a prospective cohort of 2458 adults undergoing bariatric surgery, 1945 completed the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) preoperatively (“pre-op”) and again 1 and 2 years later (“post-op”). An AUD was defined as scoring ≥8 on the AUDIT.
- Frequency of drinking, though not number of drinks on a typical drinking day, increased 2 years post-op.
- Although hazardous consumption (>2 drinks on a typical drinking day or >5 on a single occasion) decreased from 20% to 13% in the first post-op year, it rose to 17% in the second post-op year.
- The prevalence of AUD increased from 3% pre-op to 6% 2 years later.
- Of 1283 patients with no pre-op AUD, 8% had an AUD post-op.
- Of 167 patients with post-op AUD, 61% did not have an AUD pre-op.