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Psychosocial interventions to reduce eating pathology in bariatric surgery patients: a systematic review

Journal of Behavioral Medicine
Alison Kaylen-Reynard Newman, Sylvia Herbozo, Andrea Russell, Heather Eisele, Lindsay Zasadzinski, Chandra Hassan, Lisa Sanchez-Johnsen
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Bariatric surgery is the most effective treatment for severe obesity; however, a subset of patients experience suboptimal outcomes. Psychosocial interventions that address eating pathology may ameliorate negative consequences, although their efficacy has not been examined. Thus, a systematic review to evaluate the impact of psychosocial randomized controlled trials (RCTs) on eating pathology in adults pre and post-bariatric surgery was conducted. Six scientific databases were searched for psychosocial trials assessing eating pathology as an outcome. Ten RCTs representing seven distinct interventions were identified (i.e., four preoperative and six postoperative). Trials utilized cognitive-behavioral therapy, mindfulness-based approaches, acceptance-based treatment, motivational interviewing, and psychoeducational interventions. Findings provide initial support for reducing eating pathology pre and postoperatively in the short-term (i.e., 6 months); however, the small number of RCTs and heterogeneity among postoperative trials made it difficult to draw conclusions. Additional longitudinal studies are needed to determine the long-term impact of psychosocial interventions that address eating pathology in bariatric surgery patients endorsing significant eating pathology.

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