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Study hints at benefits of weight-loss surgery for less obese patients

There's more news from the annual meeting of the American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery: In a Stanford study of 981 gastric bypass surgery patients, patients with a body-mass index lower than the level recommended for weight-loss surgery lost more weight and saw greater improvement in obesity-related conditions like diabetes than those with a higher BMI. HealthDay News has a nice analysis of the research, which has not yet been published but was presented today; in the article, surgeon John Morton, MD, summarizes the work:

There was a clear trend that as your weight was lower when having gastric bypass surgery, your outcomes were actually better... This finding suggests that perhaps we should be getting patients to surgery sooner than later, before their weight goes too high and the surgery comes less effective. 

David Kendall, MD, chief scientific and medical officer of the American Diabetes Association, also weighs in:

"While these are exciting and interesting findings, it is really the first set of evidence that looks at this specifically," he said. "We need more research with larger groups and for longer periods of follow-up before we can really start ringing the bell."

Previously: Study: Outpatient bariatric surgery appears risky

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