Weight Loss Surgery May Help Cure Type 2 Diabetes

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Can Weight Loss Surgery Help Cure Type 2 Diabetes

Research shows improvements in type 2 diabetes after weight loss surgery.

One long-term study tracked 400 people with type 2 diabetes. Six years after bariatric surgery, 62% showed no signs of diabetes. They also had better blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglyceride levels.

In comparison, only 6% to 8% of people who took medicine, but didn’t have surgery, showed similar results.

New research shows that five years after weight-loss surgery, known as bariatric surgery, those who had the procedure showed better improvements in quality of life and overall health, and some no longer needed insulin, compared with those who only took diabetes medications.

About a third of the patients who had surgery were able to achieve a complete remission of their diabetes — their blood sugar returned to normal and they did not need medications.

At the five-year mark, bariatric surgery’s metabolic effect persists and is more effective at treating type 2 diabetes in moderate and severely obese patients when compared to medical therapy.

Diabetes affects 29 million people Worldwide, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. More than 70, 000 people die each year from complications associated with diabetes, the American Diabetes Association reports.

Among the patients who completed the study, two of the 28 patients assigned to medical treatment alone were able to stop their diabetes medications (5 percent). This compared with 14 of the 49 patients who had gastric bypass surgery (29 percent), and 11 of the 47 patients who underwent sleeve gastrectomy (23 percent), Schauer’s team found.


In addition, patients who had weight-loss surgery also had lower blood sugar than patients treated with medication alone.

Patients between the ages of 30 and 60 with severe type 2 diabetes were randomly assigned to three treatment groups: one group received gastric bypass surgery; a second group had bilopancreatic diversion surgery (BPD), in which part of the stomach is removed;


People who underwent surgery lost significantly more weight and had dramatically lower triglycerides and cholesterol (blood fats) than those who were treated with medication alone, the researchers found.

It seemed too good to be true when 60 Minutes reported it in 2008, but a new study confirms that weight-loss surgery can put type 2 diabetes in remission

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