Telemedicine Use Decreases the Carbon Footprint of the Bariatric Surgery Preoperative Evaluation.

Publication date: Aug 01, 2023

Healthcare-associated activity accounts for 10% of the United States’ carbon dioxide (CO) emissions. Using telemedicine for bariatric surgery evaluations decreases emissions and reduces patient burden during the multiple required interdisciplinary visits. After adopting telemedicine during COVID, our clinic continues to utilize telemedicine for preoperative bariatric evaluations. We evaluated the reduced environmental impact associated with this practice. A retrospective review of all new evaluations for vertical sleeve gastrectomy (SG) or Roux-en Y gastric bypass (RYGB) from 2019 and 2021 was conducted. The 2019 year represents pre-pandemic, in-person evaluations and 2021 represents telemedicine evaluations during the COVID pandemic. Carbon emissions were calculated using the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) validated formula of 404g CO per car-mile. Preoperative evaluation time was calculated from the initial clinic visit to the operation date. There were 51 patients in the 2019 cohort and 55 patients in the 2021 cohort. In the 2019 in-person cohort, there was significantly more kg of estimated CO emitted (10,225 vs. 2011. 4, p

Concepts Keywords
Car Attrition rate
Decreases Bariatric Surgery
Environmental Bariatric surgery
Gastrectomy Carbon Dioxide
Carbon Dioxide
Carbon Footprint
Carbon footprint
Gastric Bypass
Obesity, Morbid
Retrospective Studies
Treatment Outcome
United States


Type Source Name
drug DRUGBANK Activated charcoal
drug DRUGBANK Carbon dioxide
drug DRUGBANK Icosapent
disease VO time
disease MESH COVID-19
disease MESH Obesity Morbid

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