HOLYOKE MEDICAL CENTER PHYSICIAN PRESENTS NEW RESEARCH AT AMERICAN COLLEGE OF SURGEONS ANNUAL CONGRESS

Holyoke Medical Center’s Dr. Yannis Raftopoulos presented new research on restricting opioid medications after bariatric surgery at this year’s American College of Surgeons Annual Congress
Nov 7, 2017

HOLYOKE, MA – November 7, 2017 – Holyoke Medical Center’s Dr. Yannis Raftopoulos, Board Certified Bariatric Surgeon and Weight Management Specialist, presented new research on restricting opioid medications after bariatric surgery at this year’s American College of Surgeons Annual Congress in San Diego, California, October 22-26, 2017. This year's patient-centered conference theme was "Do What's Right for the Patient."
 
Research shows that perioperative use of opioids is associated with an increased incidence of complications in obese patients[1], and bariatric surgery patients are over-represented in substance use treatment facilities[2].
 
Dr. Raftopoulos’ study showed the use of opioids/narcotics after a patient has left the recovery room and until their discharge from the hospital dropped 40%. Previously, 100% of patients were provided with opioids during this transition. This decrease was accomplished without negatively affecting the length of hospital stay, 30-day ER visits or re-admissions. Only 1.9% of bariatric patients at Holyoke Medical Center required a narcotic prescription after hospital discharge, down from 100% previously.
 
“There has been no data presented in the past in the U.S. to address this issue, not only in bariatric surgery, but also in any other surgical field,” said Dr. Raftopoulos. “This impressive reduction in postoperative opioid use was accomplished while our Comprehensive and Metabolic Bariatric Center of Excellence boasted one of the lowest lengths of inpatient stays worldwide of only 1.2 days following laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass.”
 
“Holyoke Medical Center is proud to support Dr. Raftopoulos and the research he has done to reduce the impact on the opioid epidemic, while also providing superior care to our patients in the Pioneer Valley and surrounding area,” said Spiros Hatiras, President and CEO of Holyoke Medical Center and Valley Health Systems. 
 
The 2017 Clinical Congress of the ACS, was attended by 8,300 domestic and international surgeons from all over the world making it one of the largest surgical meetings of its kind. This prestigious meeting has significant competition for oral presentations, of which Dr. Raftopoulos’ research was one of 21 related to bariatric surgery throughout the five day conference, and was the only presentation from a mid-sized community hospital. Other presenters included those from well-known U.S. universities such as Cleveland Clinic, University of Minnesota, University of Michigan Ann Arbor, University of Arizona, Johns Hopkins, and Harvard, as well as a bariatric center in Brazil and from a university in Italy.
 
Since opening the HMC Weight Management Program in February, 2016, Dr. Raftopoulos has presented research findings in a variety of conferences, including: the European Obesity Summit in Gothenberg, Sweden in June 2016 on the first procedure-less gastric balloon; The 21st World Congress of the International Federation for the Surgery of Obesity and Metabolic Disorders (IFSO) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in September of 2016; the International Obesity Congress in Vancouver, Canada in May of 2016; the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada in June of 2016; American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress in Washington D.C. in October of 2016; and the ASMBS Annual Meeting and Obesity Week Event in New Orleans, Louisiana in October of 2016.  
 
Dr. Raftopoulos and HMC Weight Management Program will be among 10 sites nationally, and the only site in the Northeast, participating in an FDA trial assessing the efficacy of novel and revolutionary intragastric balloon. The device is swallowed as a pill and requires no endoscopy, sedation or anesthesia to be placed or removed. This trial is scheduled to begin enrollment in early 2018.
 
Dr. Raftopoulos is the Medical Director of the Holyoke Medical Center Weight Management Program, located at 11 Hospital Drive, Holyoke, MA 01040. To schedule an appointment, please call 413-535-4757.

 
[1] Lam KK et al, Curr Opin Anesthesiol 2016;29:134-140
[2] National Institutes of Drug Abuse,Cited 2/2017

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