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Is it advisable for my diabetic mother to undergo liposuction?

Q: My mother is diabetic and overweight. Her blood glucose is mostly higher than normal. Would it be okay if she gets liposuction done?

A:The best way of losing weight is a combination of a healthy, balanced diet, and regular exercises, and this works in most people. We recommend vigorous exercise like walking for 20-30 minutes a day. In severe cases we can recommend drug therapies, which can cause weight loss up to 5 -10% in 50-60% of patients. These drugs are available in India and you must consult you doctor. Drug therapy may be helpful only in combination with diet, exercise, and behaviour modification. There are three drugs available. Two drugs - rimonabant and sibtramine are available which reduce appetite are effective but have side effects. Third one - orlistat works by blocking the digestion of fat and this also has side effects like diarrhoea. There is no clinical benefit from Liposuction in treating diabetes or obesity. It is fat around the organ (visceral fat), which is harmful, and that results in diabetes rather than fat under the skin. In liposuction, fat under the skin is taken out so this has not shown to be beneficial in treating Diabetes. Removal of large volumes of subcutaneous abdominal fatty tissue with liposuction does not improve insulin sensitivity (main reason for Diabetes) or risk factors for coronary heart disease in obese women with or without type 2 diabetes. Bariatric surgery (different from Liposuction) is beneficial in only extreme cases of obesity, and to an extent can eliminate diabetes and improves obesity related diseases. Operation like Roux-en-Y: Staples or bands are used to make the stomach smaller and allow food to bypass part of the small intestine where many nutrients are absorbed. Surgery should only be considered for patients who have been unable to lose weight with diet, exercise, or medication. These patients require lifelong monitoring for possible complications.

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