Is Bariatric Surgery an effective treatment for Type 2 Diabetes?

Is Bariatric Surgery an effective treatment for Type 2 Diabetes?

The impact of type 2 diabetes reaches far beyond the usual associated symptoms. With many other medical complications being a possibility for those dealing with type 2 diabetes, patients are always looking for ways to alleviate their specific situation. Although obesity is a significant risk factor for developing or progressing type 2 diabetes, bariatric surgery can present positive results for both weight loss and the remission of diabetes.

There are a number of beneficial weight loss surgeries that patients with type 2 diabetes can pursue in order to effectively improve their battle with the debilitating disease. This article from the Perth Bariatric Surgery aims to provide patients with an overview of the different bariatric surgeries that are effective in treating type 2 diabetes, as well as explaining some of the potential risks involved with the procedures.

Types of bariatric surgeries available to help type 2 diabetes

All bariatric surgeries involve a procedure in which the long term goal is to help the patient to reduce their weight and maintain this weight loss over time. There are a number of different types of bariatric surgeries available for those dealing with type 2 diabetes, with certain procedures being more beneficial to some than others. These sorts of procedures are effective for those patients who may not be experiencing desirable results from other weight loss methods or medication and are looking for a long term solution.

At Perth Bariatric Surgery, we perform the following three effective procedures in order to help those with type 2 diabetes.

Gastric Sleeve Surgery

The gastric sleeve surgical procedure involves the surgeon removing around 75% of your stomach, leaving what is often referred to as a small tube or “sleeve” that connects to your intestines. The goal of this procedure is to reduce the amount of food that your stomach can hold, helping lessen the appetite of patients, and ultimately resulting in effective weight loss in the long term. The surgery also reduces Ghrelin, the body’s hunger hormone, again helping patients to feel less hungry.

Gastric Bypass Surgery

Gastric bypass surgery is another commonly used bariatric surgery effective for weight loss and other medical conditions. As part of the procedure, the surgeon creates a small pouch in the top section of your stomach with staples. This pouch is then attached to the lower section of your small intestine, allowing the food you eat to bypass the majority of your stomach and the upper section of your small intestine. This surgery helps the patients’ bodies to absorb less food, and help them to feel fuller after eating a smaller portion. The digestive hormones of the gut are also positively affected, helping reduce hunger in patients and seeing them return to the body’s normal weight range.

Omega Loop (Mini) Bypass Surgery

The third bariatric surgery that is known to be effective for weight loss is the omega loop bypass surgery. Similar to the gastric bypass surgery, this procedure helps to restrict the amount of food that can be consumed, as well as changing the gut hormones relating to hunger control. The procedure involves the surgeon creating a small pouch, and connecting this to the lower part of the small intestine. Unlike the standard gastric bypass, the omega loop bypass involves a single anastomosis. However, studies have shown that the benefits and weight loss from this procedure are very similar to that of the standard gastric bypass.

Benefits of bariatric surgery for type 2 diabetes

There is a large amount of research which has shown the benefit of weight loss in those people who have type 2 diabetes and have quite a high BMI. Weight loss is known to counteract the effects of the disease, and many medical professionals will recommend patients to look at their diet or exercise for modest weight loss through lifestyle choices. However, not all those who are obese can actually make these significant changes to their lifestyle without seeing new problems arise. Furthermore, most people may see relatively minor weight loss and be discouraged by the process itself, often leading to an eventual regaining of the weight.

The benefit of having a bariatric surgical procedure performed for those with type 2 diabetes is that these surgeries have been shown to improve nearly 90% of patients’ conditions with the disease. Another benefit of undergoing bariatric surgery is that it allows patients to lose far more weight than traditional weight loss methods in the long term. This weight loss helps to improve blood glucose control as a result of an increase in insulin sensitivity. Not only will this help with diabetes, but the patients’ cholesterol and blood pressure levels should see an improvement as well.

Several studies have highlighted how blood glucose in three out of four people with type 2 diabetes returned to normal after undergoing bariatric surgery. It also allowed others to reduce their medication for diabetes. These types of improvements are generally far greater in those who have only had type 2 diabetes for a short amount of time. Furthermore, In procedures like the gastric bypass surgery, there are also benefits to the gut hormones of patients within days of the surgery being performed. This has also seen quite a significant decrease in blood glucose levels for patients who have undergone these types of surgeries.

What are the potential risks of bariatric surgery?

As with any surgical procedure, there are a number of potential risks to be aware of when considering bariatric surgery. These risks are often heightened by the patient’s weight, age or presence of other medical conditions. You can always talk through these risks with your surgeon before undergoing any procedure.

One of the potential risks of bariatric surgery involves the leakage of a staple line, or bleeding during or after the surgery. There may be internal bleeding or quite significant bleeding of the surgical wound itself. For gastric sleeve surgery, there is a risk of a perforation of the stomach or intestines. On the other hand, with gastric bypass surgery patients are at risk of developing a vitamin deficiency, with the body not being able to absorb the correct amount of nutrients.

Although rare, blood clots in the lung are another potential risk with these procedures, as well as pneumonia. Furthermore, infection is also always a possibility that can occur with any surgical procedure.

Perth Bariatric Surgery

If you are looking for a long term solution for your type 2 diabetes, then bariatric surgery may be for you. Please call Perth Bariatric Surgery or book an appointment today, and we can have you in for a consultation to see whether one of these procedures may be a beneficial solution for your situation.

John Norwood
John Norwood is best known as a technology journalist, currently at Ziddu where he focuses on tech startups, companies, and products.