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ISRN Obes. 2013 Jan 21;2013:910586. doi: 10.1155/2013/910586. eCollection 2013.

Surgical stress induces an amplified inflammatory response in patients with type 2 diabetes.

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  • 1Emory Endosurgery Unit Division of General and Gastrointestinal Surgery, Department of Surgery, Emory University School of Medicine, 1364 Clifton Road, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA.
  • 2Department of Nutrition Science, College of Health and Human Sciences, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2059, USA.


Background. Morbid obesity is believed to be an extreme of the metabolic spectrum. Moreover, diabetes is hypothesized to be associated with a chronic inflammatory state that is not observed in nondiabetic healthy individuals. We investigated the differences in expression of inflammatory cytokines induced by surgical stress between diabetic and nondiabetic individuals. Method. 39 morbidly obese patients undergoing laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (9 with type 2 diabetes mellitus) were compared with 8 nonobese euglycemic patients undergoing laparoscopic antireflux surgery. Cytokine levels for IL-6, IL-10, and IL-18 were measured 15 minutes before surgery and immediately after surgery. Results. IL-6 and IL-10 levels were elevated from baseline following surgery, but morbidly obese patients exhibited a much higher elevation than lean patients. Individuals with type 2 diabetes had the most pronounced IL-6 and IL-10 elevations. Baseline IL-18 levels were significantly higher in diabetic patients compared with nondiabetic or lean patients. However, IL-18 levels were not changed in response to surgery. Conclusions. Diabetes and morbid obesity are associated with augmented cytokine expression in response to surgical trauma that is several folds higher than in nonobese euglycemic patients. Diabetic patients exhibit a chronic elevation in IL-18 that is not changed by surgical stress.

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