Obese older adults that have undergone cardiac surgery at higher risk of poor functioning
Obese older adults, that have undergone cardiac surgery, are known to have an increased number of post-operative complications. A recent study from the University of Pennsylvania has analysed the impact of these complications on overweight and obese people’s activities of daily living (ADLs) – such as eating, bathing, dressing and using the toilet. In total, data from 1,731 individuals were examined, all of whom had undergone cardiac surgery. It was found that 34 percent of these were obese and 66 percent were not, these participants were then followed over a period of two years.
The researchers found that 22 percent of participants with obesity who had had heart surgery were less able to perform their ADLs within two years, whereas 17 percent of overweight or normal weight individuals had similar problems. Further to this 10.5 percent of participants with obesity had died within 2 years, whereas 13.8 percent of non-obese participants passed away. Using these findings, the researchers concluded that obese adults with a history of heart surgery would live with greater degrees of functional impairment within two years, especially if they are under 80. The relationship between obesity and ADLs was found to be far more complex above the age of 80 and the team are hoping to continue their research into this area.