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Obesity surgery cures related ills

Posted - Nov. 1, 2004 at 2:20 p.m.



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ORLANDO, Fla., Nov 01, 2004 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- A U.S. surgeon says laparoscopic surgery for obesity, known as Roux-en-Y gastric bypass, improves related unhealthy conditions stemming from morbid obesity.

A study by Pavlos Papasavas of Western Pennsylvania Hospital revealed that after the laparoscopic bypass surgery, many patients are able to stop taking medications for a range of serious obesity related health problems, including diabetes, sleep apnea, asthma and high blood pressure.

"Comorbities associated with morbid obesity decrease life expectancy and impair quality of life," Papasavas told a recent Florida conference of physicians.

Papasavas and his colleagues followed 455 patients and collected data on medications used to treat comorbid diseases.

At follow-up, 48.7 percent of patients who took medications for high blood pressure preoperatively were able to discontinue their medications. In addition, 92 percent of postoperative gastric bypass patients who took both oral medications for diabetes and insulin were off both medications at the time of their last follow-up.

Another area of improvement was degenerative joint disease, with 32.5 percent of patients taking medications for this condition preoperatively, of whom 60 percent has been able to stop taking their medications at follow-up.

Copyright 2004 by United Press International.

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