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January 7, 2009


Question from Cologne, Germany:

Do type 1 diabetics have any additional risks from gastric bypass surgery, aside from those that apply to everyone? For instance, would it make it harder to treat a hypoglycemic episode in a timely fashion since stomach capacity is decreased and a portion of the small intestine is bypassed? Also, since the hormone amylin (IAPP - insulinoma amyloid peptide) is lacking in type 1's, would this increase the chance of "dumping syndrome" post surgery? It's my understanding that stomach emptying already occurs more rapidly in diabetics than in the normal population because of amylin deficiency.


This is a good question. It does raise the issue about hypoglycemia. Because content is limited, it suggests you need to treat hypoglycemia with a liquid containing glucose and not use solids that will not be tolerated. Dumping syndrome is possible for people with diabetes, as well as persons without diabetes. Bacterial overgrowth is also increased in people with diabetes and may be a concern. This condition occurs where there may be a blind pouch and bacteria grows in an area where constant sweeping motion of the gut keeps the area clean. The usual symptom is diarrhea.