Friday, July 29, 2011

Diabetes: Some Good News

Those who suffer from this debilitating and often deadly disease may be in line for some good news for a change. FoIB Holly R sent me links to two potentially wonderful breakthroughs.

First up:

"Surgeons at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center are innovating new ways to treat diabetes using techniques from weight-loss surgery"

There's a sort of "d'unh!" moment here: morbidly obese folks tend to be more prone to developing diabetes. But this technique is sort of the obverse side of the coin, in that the doc's are using treatments that were originally designed to treat weight gain and pointing them at the diabetes itself.

The folks at NY-P/C are looking to use a procedure called "sleeve gastrectomy" to target a side-effect of diabetes, astroparesis. They're also "offering weight-loss surgery for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes as part of an ongoing clinical trial."

So far, things look promising.

Half a world away, Israeli researchers have developed "[a]n implantable gastric stimulator with electrodes attached through laparoscopic surgery to the outer stomach muscles." Basically, it's a little "teaser" that both fools you into thinking you're already full, and promotes the release of certain hormones that suppress your desire for just one more Big Mac.

They've already implanted to little widget in over 200 people around the globe, and seen that "the system reduces blood glucose levels significantly."

Very cool.
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