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Bariatric surgery risk varies among hospitals, study finds

Los Angeles Times, August 2, 2012

Overall, patients treated in 5-star hospitals were 72% less likely to experience complications than patients treated in 1-star hospitals, the study found. Patients in 5-star hospitals were also discharged half a day earlier than patients in 1-star hospitals. The study highlights the considerable risks of bariatric surgery. The volume of bariatric surgery patients per hospital was found to be a strong indicator of the amount of risk-adjusted complications. Hospitals that treated 375 or more patients during a 3-year period had 3% fewer complications than expected. However, hospitals with the lowest patient volume had 42% more complications than expected.