At the annual meeting of the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) this summer, new research demonstrated yet another benefit of weight loss surgery: improvements in kidney health. The study assessed the medical records 52 obese patients with diabetes, and about a third of these patients had kidney disease or damage as a result of diabetes, called diabetic nephropathy. All of the patients received laparoscopic bariatric surgery. The researchers reported that at 5 years after surgery, the kidney disease had resolved in more than half of the patients. Also of note, about 75 percent of the 52 patients who had diabetes experienced improvement or remission of their diabetes 5 years after surgery. This is yet another study proving the beneficial effects of weight loss surgery go beyond just treating diabetes, sleep apnea, hypertension and other core metabolic conditions, said bariatric surgeon, Dr. Gregg Jossart. “Even kidney function improves. Eventually, these types of studies may prove that kidney failure and the need for kidney transplantation can be reduced by surgical weight reduction.”
Another recent study found that the prevalence of kidney stones has nearly doubled over the past few decades, since 1994. Experts believe that it is due to a large extent to the country’s growing rates of obesity and diabetes. Kidney stones are a very painful condition, and now affect 1 in 11 Americans, according to the study. The researchers’ analysis suggests that obesity, diabetes and gout all increase the risk of kidney stones. The increased risk of kidney stones is another important reason to maintain a healthy lifestyle and body weight. You can learn more about the risks of obesity and how weight loss surgery works by attending one of our informational seminars.