More Strange Happenings
After the news that Medtronic (NYSE:MDT) had formed an alliance with their main competitor Diabetic Investor thought things couldn’t get any stranger. That was until we read the Wall Street Journal this morning and found a page one article “To Heal Diabetes, Doctors Push Weight-Loss Surgery.”
While the article correctly points out that this crazy idea is still in its infancy, the fact that physicians would even be advocating such an approach shows just how desperate we’ve become. Bariatric surgery may be option for the morbidly obese patient with diabetes, to even consider this approach for moderately obese patients is a dangerous path.
According to the article, “Bariatric surgery usually costs about $25,000 and is a big profit center for some hospitals. If even a small percentage of diabetics chose to undergo surgery, it would bring a gusher of new business for the profession. Over the short term, at least, the cost of surgery exceeds the estimated $10,000 a year needed for conventional care of diabetics.” It’s no accident that surgeons who stand to make a small fortune performing this procedure are the strongest supporters of this approach.
Thankfully health insurers are reluctant to cover this surgery. Still studies are underway and with hefty profits hanging in the balance anything could happen.
Over the past few weeks Diabetic Investor has been researching several exciting new compounds under development for both diabetes and obesity. While many of these drugs are in early stage clinical trials and may never make it to market, some will. Even if none of these drugs make it, there are still several existing treatment options which get the job done. Given the cost and risk involved with any form of surgery it’s too early to throw in the towel on these options.
Using surgery to treat diabetes is like using a nuclear weapon to kill a mosquito, a dumb idea.