Can Surgery Treat Type 2 Diabetes?
Howard LeWine, M.D.
Q: I have type 2 diabetes and need to take three different medications to keep my blood sugar under control. I hate taking all these pills. I am very overweight and thinking about weight loss surgery. Are they all effective?
A: First, you'll need to find out if you are a candidate for the surgery. At the current time, guidelines set limits on who should have weight loss surgery. It can be considered for people with a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or more. Usually, this is at least 100 pounds overweight. The surgery also can be done if someone has a BMI of 35 or more and an obesity-related health problem, such as diabetes.
In addition to having a BMI of at least 35, you need to have completed a structured weight loss program.
Assuming you meet these criteria, you'll want to consider the risks of surgery. The surgery has become safer, but deaths and serious problems can occur.
Patients with a higher risk of serious complications during and right after surgery include those who:
-- Are extremely obese, with a body mass index of 55 or greater
-- Have a history of blood clots in the legs and / or lungs
-- Function poorly in everyday life. This group may be unable to walk even short distances or do daily activities without help.
Surgeons generally suggest one of three weight loss procedures:
-- Laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding. This is the simplest of the three procedures. It is done through small holes in the abdomen. The surgeon wraps an adjustable band around the upper stomach. This creates a small pouch with a narrow opening that empties into the rest of the stomach.
-- Open Roux-en-Y. The surgeon cuts into the abdomen and creates small pouch in the stomach. This bypasses the rest of the stomach. The pouch is hooked to a loop of small intestine beyond the first section of intestine.
-- Laparoscopic Roux-en-Y. There's no large surgical cut. Small holes are made in the abdomen. Cameras are used to guide the instruments. The technique is otherwise similar to the open Roux-en-Y.
Specialists in weight loss surgery debate which of these procedures is best. Roux-en-Y is probably more effective, however, it has greater short-term and long-term risks.
Available at Amazon.com:
- Can Surgery Treat Type 2 Diabetes?
- Self-Care Techniques to Relieve Discomfort From Buttock Pain
- Artificial Lenses Have Long Been Used to Correct Vision
- Gene Mutation That Causes Huntington's Can Occur Spontaneously
- Is It Better to Stop Smoking Abruptly or Gradually?
- Brain Scan Alone Cannot Predict Likelihood of Dementia
- Is Sunscreen Dangerous? 4 Sun Protection Dos And Don'ts
- Low Platelet Count Not Necessarily Reason to Postpone Surgery
- Could Swimming in Cool Water Cause a Heart Attack?
- Bringing Psoriasis Under Control
- Best Summer Foods for Sensitive Stomachs
- Fight the Common Mold Allergy
- Largest Ever Cell Phone Cancer Study is Inconclusive
- Treating Early-Stage Esophageal Cancer
- TNF Inhibitors Offer Relief to Those With Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Prostate Exam Good First Stop When PSA Levels Increase
- 7 Nasty Germs That Could Land Your Kid in the Hospital And How to Avoid Them
- Secondhand Smoke A Serious Public and Personal Health Problem
- What to do About Excessive Belching and Feeling Full?
- Chest Pain: A Heart Attack or Something Else?
- Screening Plays Key Role in Detecting Polyps Before They Become Cancerous
- Learn How to Read Supplement Labels
- Compression-Only CPR Can Replace Conventional CPR in Many Circumstances
- Diabetes: Could You Have Diabetes and Not Know It
- Fighting Inflammation with Food
- Cortisone Injections Unlikely to Have Negative Affect on Bones
- Bad Health Habits Rob Years From Life Span
- The Importance of Decreasing Dietary Sodium
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): Takes Your Breath Away
- 7 Ways to Prevent Heart Disease
- Hypotension or Stiff Arteries May Cause Low Diastolic Blood Pressure
- Is It OK to Travel to a High Altitude With High Blood Pressure?
- Existing Drugs to Treat Herpes Are Very Effective
- Dry Mouth Can Be a Serious Problem
- 6 Simple Ways to Improve Symptoms of Fibromyalgia
- All About Gout: Old Disease Becoming More Common
- Frequent Monitoring Critical to Effectively Manage Scleroderma
- How to Identify Suicide Risk Before It's Too Late
- Tips for Natural Allergy Relief
- Inflammation May Play Role in Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Bouncing Back After Being Sick
- Nicotine Patch May Offer Some Benefit to Ulcerative Colitis
- Common Myths and Misconceptions About Diabetes
- Vitamin E Supplements Not Recommended for Those With Diabetes
- Tick-Borne Disease Risk Peaks in Spring and Summer
- Meibomitis Creates Receptive Environment for Bacteria
- Top 4 Seasonal Allergy Mistakes
- Stress Less: Ten Strategies That Work
- Paralyzed Limbs Revived by Hacking Into Nerves
- Can Acid Reflux Damage my Esophagus
- Treadmill Test Can Reveal Hidden Problems in Heart
- Suffering From Allergies? Tailor Treatment to Your Symptoms
- Researchers Break Through to Unconscious Patients
- Key Factors Related to Heart Attack Risk
- Type 2 Diabetes Increases Risk for Cardiovascular Problems
- Hypochondria: The Impossible Illness
- Surgeries Can be Combined But May Not be Necessary
- Is Heartburn Surgery the Answer?
- Best Cooking Methods for Heartburn Sufferers
- 14 Things You Might Not Know About Aspirin
Copyright © 2010 Harvard Health. All rights reserved.