A study entitled “Incidence of type 2 diabetes after bariatric surgery: population-based matched cohort study” published in the early online edition of The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology journal suggests bariatric surgery (weight-loss surgery) reduces clinical incidence of type two diabetes in obese patients.
Obesity is a primary risk factor for the development of type two diabetes, with 80% of overweight adults being affected by the disease, which is characterized by hyperglycemia, i.e., high levels of sugar in the blood.
Bariatric surgery, which includes gastric bypass or laparoscopic gastric banding, is a procedure often considered for obese patients with type two diabetes. However, how bariatric surgery impacts the development of type two diabetes in obese individuals is currently not completely understood.
Thus, a team of researchers at King’s College London, UK and colleagues determined the effect of surgical weight loss procedures on the development of diabetes. They analyzed 2,167 patients who had undergone bariatric surgery against 2,167 controls who were not submitted to the surgery for the development of type two diabetes. Surgical weight loss procedures included laparoscopic adjustable banding, sleeve gastrectomy, or gastric bypass, and the two groups were matched for age, sex, body mass index (BMI), and blood-glucose control parameters.
The authors followed the patients for up to 7 years and observed that, while 177 controls were newly diagnosed with diabetes, only 38 new diagnoses were performed in the bariatric surgery patients. Thus, a reduction of approximately 80% in diabetes incidence was observed in patients who had undergone weight-loss surgery.
Professor Gulliford, the study’s lead author and Professor of Public Health at King’s College London, commented, “Our results suggest that bariatric surgery may be a highly effective method of preventing the onset of new diabetes in men and women with severe obesity. We need to understand how weight-loss surgery can be used, together with interventions to increase physical activity and promote healthy eating, as part of an overall diabetes prevention strategy.”