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Vitamin B12 Deficiency After Gastric Bypass Surgery for Obesity

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Grant support: in part by funds contributed by the faculty of the Department of Medicine, University of Wisconsin.

Published in abstract form in Clin Res 31:759A, 1983.

▸Requests for reprints should be addressed to Robert F. Schilling, M.D.; Department of Medicine, University of Wisconsin, 600 Highland Avenue; Madison, WI 53792.

University of Wisconsin; Madison, Wisconsin; and Theda Clark Hospital; Neenah, Wisconsin

Ann Intern Med. 1984;101(4):501-502. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-101-4-501
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Gastric bypass surgery for obesity is a popular and partially effective operation. There are few studies of changes in chemistry after this operation. Wernicke-Korsakoff encephalopathy was seen in two patients at 3 months after bypass surgery (1). In one patient megaloblastic anemia appeared 6 years after surgery (2). Serum vitamin B12 was below normal in 26% of 69 patients (3). We are not aware of studies of vitamin B12 absorption or of the effect of oral supplementation in patients who have had bypass surgery. After a low serum vitamin B12 level was found in several patients, this study was done.


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