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Cleveland Clinic study shows bariatric surgery improves, reverses diabetes
Date:3/26/2012

said. "Furthermore, the surgical patients showed major improvements in other measures of heart health, including reduced need for high blood pressure and cholesterol medications, while significantly boosting HDL the so-called 'good' cholesterol."

Effectiveness was gauged by the percentage of patients who achieved an average blood sugar within the normal range 12 months after treatment (measured using the hemoglobin A1c HbA1c a standard laboratory test that reflects average blood sugar over three months).

After 12 months, a normal HbA1c (less than 6.0) was achieved in 42.6 percent of patients who underwent gastric bypass and 36.7 percent of patients who underwent sleeve surgery, but just 12.2 percent of medically treated patients. The HbA1c of less than six is a more aggressive target than the American Diabetes Association guidelines.

Participants entered the study taking an average of three medications each for diabetes. In all of the gastric bypass patients who achieved the target level, the normal blood sugar was attained without use of any diabetic medications. Seventy-two percent of sleeve patients who reached normal blood sugar also did so without the use of any diabetic medications. In surgically-treated patients who continued to require drugs, researchers observed a substantial reduction in the need for diabetic medications.

As expected, the patients who received bariatric surgery lost more weight during the 12-month study, averaging 64.7 pounds for patients who received gastric bypass, 55.2 pounds for patients who had stomach reduction surgery, and 11.9 pounds for patients treated with medications.

The study authors reported some complications of surgery, but most were not serious. However, four patients did require a second operation. The study authors caution that the favorable results were observed after a relatively short follow-up period (12 months) and that long-term studies are needed to determine the
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Contact: Dan Doron
dorond@ccf.org
216-636-5874
Cleveland Clinic
Source:Eurekalert

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