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Utah Study Finds Gastric Bypass Surgery Has Long-Term Benefits

Diet and exercise alone may not be enough to help people who are severely overweight. A new study by researchers at LDS Hospital and the University of Utah School of Medicine shows that patients who have gastric bypass surgery are much more likely to maintain weight loss and reduce their risk for serious disease than obese individuals who don’t have the surgery.

The study shows that those patients who had gastric bypass surgery lost on average 28 percent of their weight over a six-year period.  While those who used other therapies lost about eight percent of their weight.   Ted Adams is the Program Director for the Intermountain Health and Fitness Institute at LDS Hospital. He’s the study’s lead author, and he says the surgery also has a significant impact on diseases associated with obesity. 

“Those who initially had a disease such as diabetes, high cholesterol, or high blood pressure - having had that surgery – a significant number of those patients no longer had those problems,” Adams told KUER.

The study shows that 62 percent of those who had diabetes before the surgery – no longer had the disease 6 years later.   It’s the largest and longest study yet conducted on gastric bypass patients.  The findings are published in The Journal of the American Medical Association.

Andrea Smardon is new at KUER, but she has worked in public broadcasting for more than a decade. Most recently, she worked as a reporter and news announcer for WGBH radio. While in Boston, she produced stories for Morning Edition, Marketplace Money, and The World. Her print work was published in The Boston Globe and Prior to that, she worked at Seattleââ
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