WEDNESDAY, Nov. 7, 2018 (HealthDay News) — Patients who have the entire or left side of the colon removed show increased risk for developing type 2 diabetes in the 18 years following surgery, according to a study published online Oct. 30 in eLife.

Anders B. Jensen, Ph.D., from University of Copenhagen in Denmark, and colleagues used data from a nationwide register to identify patients who underwent total colectomy, partial colectomy, or proctectomy. The authors sought to evaluate whether colectomy is associated with the development of type 2 diabetes. Noncolectomy patients who had undergone other surgeries were matched (15:1) to 3,793 colectomy patients.

The researchers found that patients with total colectomy had a hazard ratio (HR) of clinically recorded type 2 diabetes of 1.40 (95 percent confidence interval [CI], 1.21 to 1.62; P < 0.001). Risk was elevated for right hemicolectomy (10,989 patients; HR, 1.08; 95 percent CI, 0.99 to 1.19; P = 0.10), left hemicolectomy (2,513 patients; HR, 1.41; 95 percent CI, 1.19 to 1.67; P < 0.001), and sigmoidectomy (13,927 patients; HR, 1.30; 95 percent CI, 1.21 to 1.40; P = 0.001).

“The greater majority of the body’s microbes are found in the colon, so it is relevant to look at what happens after the colon or part of it is removed. In a previous study we saw no significant connection with the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases,” a coauthor said in a statement. “We were therefore rather surprised to see so relatively massive an increase in the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. In fact, the increased risk corresponds to the effect of having three times as high a body mass index.”

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