Drug offers hope for weight regain after weight-loss surgery

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Weight-loss surgery can provide substantial benefits for individuals struggling with obesity, but it isn’t always a permanent solution.

Many patients find themselves grappling with weight regain, complicating conditions like Type 2 diabetes and fatty liver disease.

A recent study led by UT Southwestern Medical Center offers a glimmer of hope through medication for managing post-surgery weight regain.

The Significance of the Study

For years, healthcare providers lacked effective strategies to help individuals combat weight regain following weight-loss surgery.

Given that more than 40% of adults in the United States grapple with obesity, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), this presented a significant healthcare challenge.

Many individuals turn to bariatric surgery as a means of achieving rapid weight loss.

However, the disheartening reality is that a substantial portion of these patients eventually regains some of the lost weight, exacerbating their health concerns.

Dr. Jaime Almandoz, who spearheaded the study, highlighted that the research identified two relatively new medications that can be instrumental in managing post-surgery weight regain.

The promising revelation is that one of these medications, semaglutide, demonstrated superior efficacy compared to the other, liraglutide.

The Research Methodology

The study delved into the health records of 207 adults who had previously undergone bariatric surgery. The majority of these patients were women, averaging around 55 years of age, and hailed from diverse backgrounds.

Importantly, these individuals had regained more than 40% of the initial weight they lost following surgery.

The study honed in on two FDA-approved medications classified as GLP-1 receptor agonists: semaglutide and liraglutide. These medications exert control over hunger and induce a sensation of fullness.

The research aimed to determine which of these drugs was more efficacious in facilitating weight loss for patients grappling with post-surgery weight regain.

The Revelations

The study yielded intriguing findings one year after initiating medication. Patients administered semaglutide experienced an average weight loss of approximately 12.9% of their body weight.

In contrast, those prescribed liraglutide recorded an average weight loss of approximately 8.8%. Moreover, the semaglutide group demonstrated a twofold likelihood of achieving a weight loss of at least 10%.

Crucially, these outcomes held true regardless of the patients’ age, gender, or the type of weight-loss surgery they had previously undergone.

Dr. Almandoz emphasized that these findings underscore the potential of these medications, particularly semaglutide, as valuable tools in helping individuals maintain a healthy weight after surgery.

Implications for Individuals

For those who have undergone weight-loss surgery and are grappling with weight regain, this study brings a ray of hope.

These newer medications, particularly semaglutide, may offer a more manageable approach to weight control, subsequently enhancing overall health.

It is advisable to engage in a discussion with a healthcare provider to establish a personalized treatment plan tailored to one’s specific needs. Each step taken toward maintaining a healthy weight contributes to a healthier life.

The study was published in Obesity.

If you care about weight loss, please read studies that hop extract could reduce belly fat in overweight people, and early time-restricted eating could help lose weight.

For more information about weight loss, please see recent studies that Mediterranean diet can reduce belly fat much better, and Keto diet could help control body weight and blood sugar in diabetes.

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