Health care systems around the world are being stretched by pressing needs to cater for populations that are becoming more and more overweight and obese. Obesity is associated with substantial morbidity and mortality rates and, although dietary and lifestyle advice can help some, bariatric surgery is an increasingly popular option in the treatment armamentarium. Gastric banding, gastric bypass and sleeve gastrectomy are used routinely across Europe to treat obese patients despite recognised complications that can result from the procedure. The beneficial effects of bariatric surgery on type 2 diabetes are well documented with a significant number of people reporting an improvement in their condition following surgery. A number of clinical trials are now underway to study the health care benefits of offering bariatric surgery to adolescents and also to people with a lower BMI.
The role of the diabetes specialist nurse is becoming increasingly important as multidisciplinary teams form to take care of these patient cohorts both pre- and post-surgery and in their long-term follow-up care. © 2012 FEND. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.