Surgery for diabetes?

From Australian Doctor newspaper, 21 March 2014:

In December last year, Melbourne hosted 11,000 diabetes experts for the International Diabetes Federation world congress.

Amid the usual hand-wringing about rising rates of the disease and its complications, there was considerable buzz about obesity surgery.

Much of the interest revolved around a study that showed nearly three-quarters of obese patients with type 2 diabetes who underwent bariatric surgery achieved remission of diabetes at two years, compared with just 16% of a control group given usual medical care.

Data from the fifteen-year, 4000 subject strong Swedish Obese Subjects study, presented at the conference, showed that nearly three-quarters of obese patients with type 2 diabetes who underwent bariatric surgery achieved remission of diabetes at two years, compared with just 16% of a control group given usual medical care.

Furthermore 31% of the surgery patients remained in remission 15 years after surgery, compared to 7% of control patients.

Patients who underwent surgery also had significantly lower incidence of microvascular and macrovascular complications.

That, and other data in overweight but not obese subjects, has raised the prospect of bariatric surgery as a new tool to treat type 2 diabetes in patients who are struggling not only with their weight but also their diabetes and other associated health issues. Read more (subscription only)

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