Top Content 2020: Obesity

January 8, 2021
Grace Halsey

Interviews with obesity experts, short tests of clinical and guideline knowledge, and news briefs topped the popular content on obesity on Patient Care in 2020.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, obesity prevalence in the United states in 2017-2018 was 42.4%, an increase from 30.5% in 1999-2000 and the first time the national rate has surpassed 40%. Rates of childhood obesity also have increased dangerously, with nearly 20% of youth aged 2 to 19 years now affected vs 5.5% in the mid-1970s. The unrelenting rise in prevalence has created an epidemic of metabolic derangements including type 2 diabetes, fatty liver disease, chronic kidney disease, and more.

Obesity has been formally recognized as a complex, chronic, and relapsing disease disease that requires long-term management including medication and, in some cases, bariatric surgery.

In 2020, Patient Care Online© spoke with leading researchers, clinicians, and policy advocates on the dangers of the current epidemic, on advances in disease knowledge and treatment, and on the role for primary care in prevention.

Pharmacotherapy for Obesity Should Begin in Primary Care

Video interview with Louis J. Aronne, MD, Director of the Comprehensive Weight Control Center, the Sanford I. Weill Professor of Metabolic Research, Professor of Clinical Medicine at Weill Cornell Medicine

Dr Louis Aronne outlines the role of medication in obesity treatment and says primary care is absolutely the place to begin.

Bariatric Surgery: Clinician & Patient Barriers to the First Conversation

Video interview with Gretchen Ames, PhD, Bariatric Surgery and Medicine Program
Mayo Clinic Bariatric Center, Jacksonville, FL

A clinical psychologist from the Mayo Clinic Bariatric Center in Jacksonville, FL, explains and corrects key misperceptions that inhibit open discussion of the often life-altering therapy.

Diet and Exercise will Not Sustain Weight Loss in Obesity

Video interview with Caroline M Apovian, MD, Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics
Section of Endocrinology, Diabetes, Nutrition and Weight Management, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA

Diet and exercise alone are not sufficient to promote meaningful, sustained weight loss in people with obesity. The underlying pathology in obesity that causes faulty hormonal signals must be addressed and requires pharmacologic management and not infrequently, surgery.

Experts Anticipate Second-generation Weight-loss Drugs

Video interview with Donna Ryan, MD, Professor Emerita, Pennington Biomedical Research Center, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA

Current weight-loss drugs help sustain reductions of approximately 10%. Agents in the pipeline may reliably increase that to 15%-a level where important metabolic change begins.

What do you Know About Weight-loss Medications?

Five questions and evidence-based answers prepared by Alex Evans, PharmD, MBA, Patient Care contributing pharmacist

Weight loss is essential to arrest the cardiovascular disease and metabolic dysfunction linked to obesity. What do you know about the drugs now available that may help?

4 Questions on Guideline-directed Weight Loss for PCPs

Four questions and evidence-based answers prepared by Veronica Hackethal, MD, Patient Care contributing physician

Rapidly rising obesity rates in the US threaten to reverse decades of effort against cardiometabolic disease. How well do you know what experts recommend for your at-risk patients?


Brief Reports on Obesity from 2020

Liraglutide Receives FDA Approval for Treatment of Obesity in Adolescents

Bariatric Surgery Shown to Increase Life Expectancy by 3 Years Compared to Usual Care

CDC: Adult Obesity Rising, Racial and Ethnic Disparities Persist

Obesity in the US: State by State

Bariatric Surgery Yields Therapeutic Hormonal Response

Why is Obesity Medicine the Fastest Growing Medical Specialty in the US?