Obesity widens its grip as fat ops soar 12 per cent

The number of weight-loss stomach operations has risen 12 per cent in one year as fatter people try to reverse the rising tide of obesity.

There were 8,087 operations in England’s hospitals in 2010/11, up from 7,214 the previous year, according to NHS data.

The figures show a 30-fold increase in the number of people going under the knife in the last decade, with 261 weight-loss operations in 2000/01.

Bariatric weight-loss surgery includes stomach stapling, gastric bypasses and a procedure called sleeve gastrectomy.

The survey also found a substantial rise in the number of hospital admissions for patients whose main diagnosis was obesity. Over the last decade, these admissions have risen from 1,054 to 11,574. Admissions among women are almost three times higher than for men (8,654 in 2010/11 compared with 2,919 for men).

Recent figures include operations to adjust an existing gastric band rather than fit a new one. Of the 8,087 procedures in 2010/11, 1,444 were for maintenance of an existing band.

Tim Straugham, chief executive of the NHS Information Centre, said: ‘The report charts the growing impact of obesity on both people’s health and NHS resources.’

The north-east has the highest rate of admissions with a primary diagnosis of obesity (40 per 100,000 of the population), followed by the east midlands (36 per 100,000) and London (35 per 100,000).

Tam Fry, from the National Obesity Forum, said: ‘The regional variations are very concerning.’


Written by Aidan Radnedge

Original article published in Metro: 23/02/2012