Slightly Higher Body Mass Linked to Lower Death Rate After Bypass Surgery

Armen Hareyan's picture

Healthy Heart and Surgery

Slightly heavier people seem to fair better during the physical trauma of coronary artery bypass surgery (CABG), but the extra pounds likely have an overall negative effect on heart health, according to a study in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

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"There has been a trend for a higher in-hospital mortality rate following CABG among obese patients, but only the study with the largest sample size found that trend to be statistically significant," said lead author Ruyun Jin, M.D., a postdoctoral fellow at Providence Health Systems' Medical Data Research Center (MDRC) in Portland, Ore.

Obesity limits mobility and restricts lung function - presumably resulting in higher mortality among obese cardiac bypass patients, Jin said.