Effect of Roux-en-Y gastric bypass on carotid intima-media thickness in Chinese obese patients with type 2 diabetes.
BACKGROUND Carotid intima-media thickness (C-IMT) can be considered as an early marker of atherosclerosis, thus representing a reliable cardiovascular risk predictor. Bariatric surgery decreases the burden of cardiovascular disease in obese patients through complex mechanisms, of which weight loss is merely the most evident epiphenomenon. The aim of this study is to evaluate C-IMT variations in patients undergoing Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) and possible correlations with biometric parameters and cardiovascular risk factors. METHODS Thirty patients undergoing RYGB for morbid obesity were enrolled for carotid artery B-mode ultrasound evaluation before surgery and at 1-, 3-, 6-, and 12-month follow-up; C-IMT was recorded at three levels (bulb, common, and internal carotid). At each one of the follow-ups, biometric and serohematic parameters were also collected. RESULTS The 22 patients who completed the follow-up and were included in the study showed significant C-IMT reduction at all three levels at 12-month follow-up (p < 0.001). Along with a significant BMI reduction and diabetes/hypertension remission, we found a considerable decrease in total cholesterol (219 vs 164 mg/dl; p < 0.001) and uric acid (5.6 vs 4.5 mg/dl; p < 0.01) and a significant increase in HDL cholesterol (43.9vs59.2 mg/dl; p < 0.001). The data imply that the mean 10-year cardiovascular risk score drops by nearly 50 % (5.7 ± 5.6 vs. 2.9 ± 2.7 %, p < 0.001) according to Framingham cardiovascular risk stratification. CONCLUSIONS RYGB is associated with significant decrease in C-IMT at 1 year. Pathophysiologic processes underlying such a variation, probably involving lipid and urate metabolism and their correlation with cardiovascular risk reduction should be confirmed by long-term prospective trials.