Tipping the balance: the pathophysiology of obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus

Surg Clin North Am. 2011 Dec;91(6):1139-48, vii. doi: 10.1016/j.suc.2011.08.007.


Obesity plays a major role in the development of type 2 diabetes mellitus, and it has long been accepted that weight loss plays a significant role in diabetes therapy. This weight loss has traditionally been accomplished through lifestyle changes including diet and exercise. What has only more recently gained acceptance is that bariatric surgery may have a role to play in diabetes therapy as well. This article discusses the pathophysiology of type 2 diabetes mellitus and obesity and provides a basic understanding of these diseases, which forms the basis for understanding the importance of weight loss in their treatment.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bariatric Surgery
  • Body Mass Index
  • Comorbidity
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / epidemiology*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / genetics
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / physiopathology*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / therapy
  • Disease Progression
  • Energy Intake
  • Energy Metabolism / physiology
  • Humans
  • Insulin Resistance / physiology
  • Leptin / physiology
  • Obesity / epidemiology*
  • Obesity / physiopathology*
  • Obesity / surgery
  • Risk Factors
  • Weight Loss


  • Leptin