25 Oct New Research on Bariatric Surgery Suggests Benefits Beyond Weight Loss
New research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association and reported in the Wall Street Journal suggests that bariatric surgery could lower a patient’s risk of heart attacks, strokes, and other forms of major cardiovascular disease. In the study conducted by the Cleveland Clinic, researchers analyzed EHR from 13,722 obese patients with Type 2 diabetes and other high-risk health problems and found that patients who had bariatric surgery were 39% less likely to experience a heart- or stroke-related event later.
Bariatric surgery is usually recommended to people who are 100 or more pounds over their ideal weight, have a body-mass index of 40 (or 35 if they also have diabetes or hypertension), or can’t lose weight for health improvements through traditional weight loss methods. There are several types of surgery including gastric bypass, ‘sleeve’ surgery, etc, that may be suitable for different patients and are best performed and monitored by specialists in bariatric procedures.
Studies over more than two decades have shown that bariatric surgery can rid some patients of their diabetes or hypertension or even help them get off certain medications. This is a promising finding showing that Bariatric surgery has longer term benefits than previously realized. Given the significant short and long term benefits and overall cost savings from reduced medications and comorbidities, loss of work productivity etc, most insurance companies now cover the cost of surgery when indicated.