The question of whether to have lap band surgery or to manage Type 2 diabetes without the procedure, could be just a matter of personal preference. That was the conclusion researchers made at the end of a study reported on in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism in April 2015.
Researchers at Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts, USA, compared the two approaches in forty Type 2 diabetic participants. The participants…
The Type 2 diabetic participants were randomly assigned to the surgery group or the group treated with medications and an intense weight loss program. At the end of one year more surgical patients reached acceptable blood sugar levels, but the difference was not statistically significant…
- both groups had about the same improvement in their HbA1c control.
- systolic blood pressure (top number) was better with non-surgical care, but diastolic blood pressure (lower number), blood fats, fitness, and the risk of heart disease were the same in both groups.
- both groups reported improvement in their perception of the impact of weight on their quality of life and problem areas in diabetes.
From these results, it was concluded diabetes control, heart disease risk, and patient satisfaction were the same in both groups, and suggest personal preference might be an appropriate deciding factor in choosing treatment. They also suggest longer studies might uncover differences that could emerge after the first year.
Lap Band Surgery entails inserting stomach bands. Surgeons work through small cuts in the abdomen, minimizing scars and healing time. A camera is inserted so the surgeon can see the stomach… a ring is then placed around the stomach. Four to 6 weeks later the band is inflated with a solution of salt and water. When inflated the band keeps the top of the stomach partly closed, so appetite, eating, and weight decreases. As in any surgery, bleeding, infection, and untoward reaction to anesthetic are all possible – but rare. Blood clots can form in the legs and travel to the lungs. Gallstones and malnutrition are also risks.
Non-surgical medical care for high blood sugar levels usually commences with the oral drug metformin, and other oral drugs can be added, or maybe even replace it altogether. A carefully supervised weight loss program means coaching from medical, dietetic and nursing staff and sticking to a sensible eating and exercise plan. This method has fewer risks but for some Type 2 diabetics, can be more difficult.