Early enhancements of hepatic and later of peripheral insulin sensitivity combined with increased postprandial insulin secretion contribute to improved glycemic control after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass.

  1. Sten Madsbad1
  1. 1Department of Endocrinology, Hvidovre Hospital, Hvidovre, Denmark
  2. 2Novo Nordisk Foundation Centre for Basic Metabolic Research, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
  3. 3Section of Molecular Physiology, Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports, August Krogh Centre, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
  4. 4Department of Incretin Biology, Novo Nordisk, Bagsværd, Denmark
  5. 5Department of Surgical Gastroenterology, Hvidovre Hospital, Hvidovre, Denmark
  6. 6Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
  1. Correspondence: Kirstine N. Bojsen-Møller, E-mail: kirstine.bojsen-moeller{at}


Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) improves glycemic control within days after surgery, and changes in insulin sensitivity and beta-cell function are likely to be involved. We studied 10 obese patients with type 2 diabetes and 10 obese glucose tolerant subjects before, 1 week, 3 months and 1 year after RYGB. Participants were included after a preoperative diet induced total weight loss of −9.2±1.2%. Hepatic and peripheral insulin sensitivity were assessed using the hyperinsulinemic euglycemic clamp combined with glucose tracer technique and beta-cell function evaluated in response to an intravenous glucose-glucagon challenge as well as an oral glucose load. Already within 1 week, RYGB reduced basal glucose production, improved basal hepatic insulin sensitivity and increased insulin clearance highlighting the liver as an important organ responsible for the early effects on glucose metabolism after surgery. Insulin mediated glucose disposal and suppression of fatty acids did not improve immediately after surgery but increased at 3 months and 1 year likely related to the reduction in body weight. Insulin secretion increased after RYGB, but only in patients with type 2 diabetes and only in response to oral glucose, underscoring the importance of the changed gut anatomy.

  • Received August 23, 2013.
  • Accepted November 13, 2013.

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