HumanInsight Remote Follow-up with a Mobile Application Is Equal to Traditional Outpatient Follow-up After Bariatric Surgery: the BELLA Pilot Trial
Obes Surg. 2023 Apr 21. doi: 10.1007/s11695-023-06587-2. Online ahead of print.
PURPOSE: Medical follow-up after bariatric surgery is recommended. However, the compliance was poor. This study aimed to evaluate the feasibility of a smartphone-based fully remote follow-up (FU) program for patients after bariatric surgery.
METHODS: In the interventional group, patients were followed up using a smartphone application (app), through which questionnaires were sent regularly. Participants in the control group underwent standard FU at the outpatient clinic every three months. After 12 months, all the participants were evaluated at an outpatient clinic.
RESULTS: Between August 2020 and March 2021, 44 and 43 patients in the interventional and control groups, respectively, were included in the analysis after three patients were lost to FU, and three withdrew their informed consent because they wished for more personal contact with medical caregivers. After 12 months, total weight loss (TWL), %TWL, and percentage of excess weight loss (%EWL) did not differ between groups. There were no significant differences in the complication rates, including surgical complications, malnutrition, and micronutrition deficiency. The parameters of bioelectrical impedance analysis and quality of life did not differ between the groups. Vitamins and minerals in serum were similar in both groups except for calcium, which was significantly higher in the interventional group (2.52 mmol/L vs. 2.35 mmol/L, p = 0.038).
CONCLUSION: Fully remote FU with a smartphone application is at least as effective as traditional in-person FU in an outpatient clinic after bariatric surgery. Through remote FU, patients can save time and medical professionals may have more resources for patients with more severe problems.
PMID:37081252 | DOI:10.1007/s11695-023-06587-2
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