For people with type 2 diabetes, going under the knife topeel away the pounds may be more potent than standard treatments, according aninternational analysis published in The New England Journal of Medicine andreported by HealthDay News

For the study, researchers tracked 60 severely obese peoplewho had type 2 diabetes and were between ages 30 and 60. One third of them wereput on a diabetes drug treatment plan that also included diet and lifestylechanges. The rest of the participants underwent one of two weight loss surgicalprocedures. 

At the end of the study, researchers found that all of thesurgical patients were able to stop taking their diabetes meds and the majorityof them entered into full remission. But not so for the traditional treatmentgroup. 

Having weight-loss surgery “dramatically reduces blood sugarlevels, and very often surgical patients can stop taking the medications usedfor diabetes,” said Francesco Rubino, MD, chief of gastrointestinal metabolicsurgery and director of the Metabolic and Diabetes Surgery Center at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell in New York City.  

Incidentally, this finding coincides with conclusions of researchdone by the Cleveland Clinic. 

While these findings are promising, other doctors cautionedthat the health benefits of the surgery could be diminished if people returnedto unhealthy eating habits after the operations. In addition, doctors alsowarned that weight-loss surgeries had risks attached. What’s more, docs said thatpeople with other major health problems, such as high blood pressure orobesity-related sleep apnea (interrupted breathing during sleep), faced limitedsurgery options. 

But overall, doctors agreed that for diabetes patients whocould afford these costly surgeries, the long-term benefits probably outweighedmany of the risks. 

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