WDEL's Delaware HealthWatch
with Frank Gerace

Gastric Bypass Surgery

A new study apparently shows long-term health benefits connected to gastric bypass surgery.

Ten years ago, gastric bypass surgery for severely overweight people was new, and not much was known about its long-term benefits, including sustained weight loss and lower risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

A study conducted recently at the University of Utah School of Medicine seems to show the benefits are real.

Dr. Ted Adams: "Almost 80% of all the patients who had gastric bypass surgery at six years had been able to maintain very significant degree of weight loss."

Dr. Adams led the study, which appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association, and which looked at more than 1100 severely obese patients.

One group had the surgery, and there were two control groups--one whose members had been approved for the surgery but hadn't had it, and another whose members weren't considering the procedure.

Dr. Adams says the findings were telling.

Adams: "Every cardiovascular risk factor that we studied had improved significantly, or remained improved, in the patients who had the gastric bypass surgery. New cases of diabetes was significantly lower when compared to the controls."

It's projected that 31-million people in the U.S. can qualify for gastric bypass surgery.

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