Gastric bypass controls diabetes long term better than other methods

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Gastric bypass controls diabetes long term better than other methods.

People who undergo gastric bypass surgery are more likely to experience a remission of their diabetes than patients who receive a gastric sleeve or intensive management of diet and exercise, according to a new study.

Bypass surgery had already shown better results for diabetes than other weight-loss methods in the short term, but the new research followed patients for five years.

“We knew that surgery had a powerful effect on diabetes,” says Philip Schauer of the Bariatric & Metabolic Institute at the Cleveland Clinic.

At the end of that time, two of 38 patients who only followed intensive diet and exercise plans were no longer in need of insulin to manage blood sugar levels.

This study was also one of the few to show that bariatric surgery could help those with only mild obesity, defined as a body mass index between 27 and 34.

How bariatric surgery might improve diabetes is still unknown, but scientists have pointed to effects on the body’s metabolism (SN: 8/24/13, p. 14) and gut microbes (SN: 9/5/15, p. 16).

Over five years, gastric bypass patients showed better control of blood sugar levels than patients who used a gastric sleeve or medical management such as intensive diet and exercise plans.

The same research team had published similar results at one and three years after surgery, but few studies looked further, says Kristoffel Dumon, a bariatric surgeon with the University of Pennsylvania Health System in Philadelphia.

With weight-loss surgery, you often see rapid initial results, but you want to see that to a five-year time point.” Dumon also notes that the patients who received only intensive medical therapy did not report an improvement in their quality of life, and their emotional well-being worsened.

Author: Laura Beil

Source: sciencenews.org