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Reverse Diabetes: Weight Loss Surgery

Posted: March 22, 2018

reverse diabetes, lasting weight lossOne of weight-loss surgery’s chief benefits is how it can reverse diabetes. In many people, the reversal begins before they start to lose weight.

Eight out of 10 patients who have a type of surgery known as Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery see their diabetes go into remission. For many of them, the effect is immediate.

But how does that happen? It may have to do with changes in the intestines, according to new research underway. These changes occur after people have Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery.

“Bariatric surgery is the most effective option for obesity and its complications, such as type 2 diabetes,” said Margaret A. Stefater, M.D, Ph.D., the lead author of an ongoing study and a fellow at Boston Children’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School in Boston, Mass.

So far, Stefater and other researchers have found that the surgery leads to dramatic changes in gene expression in intestinal tissue. They believe that the intestine uses more glucose in order support its energy needs. The researchers hope to use their data to help develop nonsurgical ways to reverse diabetes.

More than 30 million people have diabetes nationwide. About 25 percent are unaware. Diabetes is the No. 1 cause of kidney failure, lower-limb amputations, and adult-onset blindness. And, in the last 20 years, the number of adults diagnosed with diabetes has more than tripled. Federal health authorities say it has to do with more people growing older and becoming overweight or obese.

Here are 10 symptoms people experience when they have diabetes. If you have any of the following diabetes symptoms, see your doctor to have your blood sugar tested:

  • Frequent need to urinate, especially at night
  • Extreme thirst
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Increased appetite
  • Blurry vision
  • Numb or tingling hands, feet
  • Tiredness
  • Very dry skin
  • Sores that heal slowly
  • More infections than usual

Learn more about how weight-loss surgery can improve your health at a free seminar offered through Bon Secours Surgical Weight Loss Center.


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