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Transforming Lives How Bariatric Surgery Is Redefining Diabetes Management

Transforming Lives: How Bariatric Surgery Is Redefining Diabetes Management

Bariatric surgery for diabetes management: in Lebanon and worldwide

Diabetes, a condition that affects over 38 million individuals across the nation, emerges when the levels of blood sugar, or glucose, rise excessively. Persistent high blood glucose levels can induce severe health issues over time, including heart disease, stroke, nerve damage, and eye complications. This article will focus on Bariatric surgery for diabetes management.


Traditional Versus Surgical Management

Among those living with type 2 diabetes, the most prevalent form, some manage their blood glucose levels through lifestyle modifications such as diet and exercise. Additionally, medications can aid in the control of blood glucose levels. Over the last few decades, clinical trials have demonstrated that bariatric surgery, aimed at controlling weight, can effectively manage type 2 diabetes. However, the long-term outcomes of these interventions in comparison remained uncertain.


Insightful Research Findings

To delve deeper, researchers supported by the NIH at four different institutions analyzed data from four prior clinical trials conducted from May 2007 to August 2013. These single-center studies assessed the efficacy of bariatric surgeries against medical and lifestyle interventions for diabetes management.


Surgical Advantages Unveiled

The study revealed that, seven years following the initial intervention, 54% of those who underwent surgery achieved an A1c level below 7%. Moreover, by the seventh year, 18% of the surgical group showed no signs or symptoms of diabetes, significantly higher than the 8% weight loss in the non-surgical group. These differences persisted at the 12-year mark.


Side Effects: A Closer Look

The study did not find major differences in side effects between the groups, though the surgical group exhibited a higher incidence of fractures, anemia, low iron levels, and gastrointestinal events, likely due to the greater weight loss and consequent nutritional deficiencies.


Broadening the Scope for Surgery

Interestingly, the benefits of surgery were also evident among participants with lower BMI scores, ranging from 27 to 34 at the time of study enrollment. This new evidence supports the surgery’s efficacy for some individuals with a BMI below 35.


Concluding Thoughts by Dr. Jean Lawrence

Dr. Jean Lawrence from the NIH’s National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases highlighted the significance of these findings, stating, “These results affirm that individuals with overweight or obesity and type 2 diabetes can achieve long-term health improvements and alter the trajectory of their diabetes through surgical interventions.” This study underscores the transformative potential of bariatric surgery in managing type 2 diabetes, marking a significant step forward in the treatment of this widespread condition.