(HealthDay News) — Intensive lifestyle and drug therapy is associated with achievement of normoglycemia and sustained weight loss in patients with type 2 diabetes, according to a study published online March 15 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Natalia McInnes, M.D., from McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada, and colleagues randomly allocated 83 participants with type 2 diabetes to an eight-week intensive metabolic intervention, a 16-week intensive metabolic intervention, or standard diabetes care. Weight loss and normoglycemia were targeted with lifestyle approaches and treatment with metformin, acarbose, and insulin glargine during the intensive intervention period; diabetes drugs were then discontinued.

The researchers found that 50.0 and 3.6 percent of the eight-week intervention group and controls achieved normoglycemia on therapy at eight weeks (relative risk, 14.0; 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 1.97 to 99.38); these percentages were 70.4 and 3.6 percent in the 16-week and control groups, respectively, at 16 weeks (relative risk, 19.7; 95 percent CI, 2.83 to 137.13). Overall, 21.4 percent of the eight-week group and 10.7 percent of controls and 40.7 percent of the 16-week group versus 14.3 percent of controls met hemoglobin A1c criteria for complete or partial diabetes remission at 12 weeks after completion of the intervention (relative risks, 2.00 [95 percent CI, 0.55 to 7.22] and 2.85 [95 percent CI, 1.03 to 7.87], respectively).

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“A short course of intensive lifestyle and drug therapy achieves on-treatment normoglycemia and promotes sustained weight loss,” the authors write.

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