Fecal microbiota transplant does not improve results of bariatric surgery

Fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) from a lean donor does not reduce body weight or improve the results of bariatric surgery among adults with severe obesity, according to a study published online Dec. 16 in JAMA Network Open.

Perttu Lahtinen, M.D., from Päijät-Häme Central Hospital in Lahti, Finland, and colleagues examined whether FMT from a lean donor reduces body weight and further improves the results of bariatric surgery in a randomized clinical trial conducted in 2018 to 2021 involving adults with severe obesity followed for 18 months. Forty-one patients were recruited: 21 and 20 received FMT from a lean donor and autologous placebo, respectively.

The researchers found that six months after FMT, 34 and four patients underwent laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass and laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy, respectively. At six months, the percentage of total weight loss (TWL) was 4.8 and 4.6 percent in the FMT and placebo groups, respectively, with no significant difference seen between the groups. The percentage of TWL was 25.3 and 25.2 percent in the FMT and placebo groups, respectively, at 18 months from baseline (12 months from surgery), with no significant difference between the groups.

“FMT by gastroscopy into the duodenum did not affect the body weight of participants with obesity,” the authors write. “Bariatric surgery six months after FMT or placebo administration reduced weight equally in both groups during the one-year follow-up.”

Two authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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Journal information:
JAMA Network Open

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