A Swedish study shows that bariatric surgery shows significant improvement for Type 2 Diabetes patients. The study reports that 72% of patients achieved remission in just two years after surgery compared to 16% who didn’t have surgery. Also, 15 years after surgery, 31% of those patients stayed in remission compared to 7% of control patients. This information was presented at the International Diabetes Federation.
Newly-diagnosed patients maintained remission rates during their 2, 10 and 15-year follow-up visits (94%, 60% and 47%) than those who had diabetes for more than three years before surgery (39%, 12% and 9%). The goal is to have bariatric surgery before three years after diagnosis for the greatest chance of remission in regards to excessive weight loss.
This study evaluated 2,010 obese patients who had weight-loss surgery from 1987-2001 and were 37-60 years old. 68% of patients had vertical band gastroplasty, 19% gastric banding and 13% had gastric bypass surgery. The same study is still being conducted at 25 different surgical departments and 480 primary care clinics across Sweden. Of the 2,010 patients, 343 patients had Type II Diabetes.
The presenter of the study, Markku Peltonen, mentions that while the bariatric surgery does show impressive weight loss results from many people regain the weight slowly after two years after the procedure. This was observed in their study. He is the director of the department of chronic disease prevention at the National Institute of Health and Welfare in Helsinki. While the chance to regain weight is high, surgery patients are in fact doing better than the control group who didn’t have surgery at all.
Perhaps the best reporting of the study is that 31% of patients are still in remission from their diabetes 15 years after having weight-loss surgery. It shows that the deterioration of beta cells was significant and was able to hold off the disease for an extended period. Regarding complications with diabetes, the study showed a 47% lower incidence rate of complications than previously reported.
While the benefits associated with disease duration are promising others, who had diabetes for more than three years before surgery showed not much improvement. Researchers are still studying why and how remission occurs and how to help those patients too. Overall, the study shows a considerable increase in diabetes patients for those who have been diagnosed three years or prior before having their weight loss surgery.