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Bariatric Surgery may Raise Feeling of Drunkenness

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The team from Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, has warned that people who have undergone bariatric surgery may be at the risk of getting drunk faster as the procedure drastically lowers body tolerance for alcohol. The paper is appeared in the journal JAMA Surgery.


The women, who had Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) - the most common bariatric surgical procedure performed in the world also reported a greater feeling of drunkenness. Pepino and colleagues conducted a study that included eight women who had RYGB surgery.  The researchers observed that the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) peaked in women who have had this surgery after two drinks compared to four drinks in those women who have not had this surgery.

"The results demonstrate that RYGB increases the rate of delivery of ingested alcohol into the systemic circulation," said lead researcher Marta Yanina Pepino.

They found that BAC increased faster, the peak BAC was approximately two-fold higher and feelings of drunkenness were greater in women with surgery group. The findings have important public safety and clinical implications.

"These data underscore the need to make patients aware of the alterations in alcohol metabolism that occur after RYGB surgery, to help reduce the risk of potential serious consequences of moderate alcohol consumption," the authors concluded.

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