Journal: Weight-loss surgery should be a standard of care for some diabetes

Diabetes Remission

Journal: Weight-loss surgery should be a standard of care for some diabetes 

A surgery developed at East Carolina University that can put an end to insulin shots for patients with diabetes has been recognized as a "standard of care" for some patients with the chronic disease.

More than 20 years after Dr. Walter Pories published evidence that a type of bariatric, or weight-loss, surgery led to a long-term remission of diabetes symptoms, the official journal of the American Diabetes Association, Diabetes Care, has said the operation should be considered a way to treat type 2 diabetes in patients who are obese.

"The thought was always that diabetes was an incurable, progressive disease, but with a fairly simple operation that takes about an hour, you can cure it," said Pories, the founding chair of the Department of Surgery at ECU's Brody School of Medicine. "We found that diabetes disappears completely between two to four days after surgery." 

Type 2 diabetes is a long-term metabolic disorder characterized by high blood sugar, insulin resistance and a relative lack of insulin. Long-term complications include heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure and poor circulation, which can result in limb amputation. It generally occurs as a result of obesity and not enough exercise, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases and the World Health Organization. 

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