1) How long does it take to schedule a new patient appointment for someone who desires to lose weight?
If you pay out of pocket we can see you the next business day. If you want to use your insurance it may take 3-5 days while we wait for the insurance approval.
2) Do you accept new patients with obesity?
Yes, we do. We ask you to bring available blood tests from other providers and the current regimen of medications.
3) Do you routinely screen for obesity in the office?
Yes, we routinely measure patients’ weight, height and calculate a Body Mass Index (BMI). The BMI is an attempt to quantify the amount of tissue mass in an individual, and then categorize that person as underweight, normal weight, overweight, or obese based on that value.
4) Is obesity a disease and can it be inherited?
Obesity has been officially recognized as a disease by the American Medical Association, an action that could put more emphasis on the health condition by doctors and insurance companies in order to minimize its effects. The evidence so far suggests that genetic predisposition is not destiny; many people who carry so-called “obesity genes” do not become overweight. Rather, it seems that eating a healthy diet and getting enough exercise may counteract some of the gene-related obesity risks.
5) What causes obesity?
Obesity may be a disease by itself or a manifestation of other illnesses.
Like many other medical conditions, obesity is the result of an interplay between environmental and genetic factors. Studies have identified variants in several genes that may contribute to weight gain and body fat distribution; although, only in a few cases are genes the primary cause of obesity. Looking for underlying diseases is essential in the work up of an obese patient. Thyroid gland disfunction, untreated or undiagnosed diabetes, eating disorders and psychiatric conditions must be carefully evaluated and excluded in every obese patient.
6)Who is most affected by obesity?
More than 35% of U.S. adults are obese, and more than 34% are overweight. Obesity affects 17% of all children and adolescents in the United States, which is three times the prevalence from just one generation ago. Nearly 32% of children and adolescents are either overweight or obese.
7) What body systems are affected by obesity?
The endocrine system (pancreatitis; fatty pancreas), the cardiovascular system (heart attack; elevated cholesterol/atherosclerosis; abnormal heart rhythms; hypertension; peripheral vascular disease; stroke), mental health (depression), liver (nonalcoholic fatty liver disease-NALD; nonalcoholic steatohepatitis-NASH)
8) Is life expectancy affected by obesity?
Adults with extreme obesity have increased risks of dying at a young age from various diseases, including cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and kidney and liver diseases, according to results of an analysis of data pooled from 20 large studies of people from three countries. The study, led by researchers from the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institute of Health, found that people with class III (or extreme) obesity had a dramatic reduction in life expectancy compared with people of normal weight. The findings appeared on July 8, 2014, in PLOS Medicine.
9)What is the best course of action for patients with obesity?
Recognizing a problem is the first step in the process of fixing that problem. Once you admit that being overweight is a problem, we can start an individually tailored treatment that may include all or some of the following steps depending on the severity of the obesity and your response to an interaction:
-Change your diet.
If changing your diet, getting more physical activity and taking medication hasn’t helped you lose enough weight, bariatric or “metabolic” surgery may be an option. The American Heart Association recommends surgery for those who are healthy enough for the procedure and have been unsuccessful with lifestyle changes and medication.
10) What are the common side effects of long term use of weight loss medications?
Common Side Effects Associated with long-term use of Weight Loss Medications include Increased blood pressure and heart rate, insomnia, nervousness, restlessness, dependence, abuse or withdrawal.
11) How frequently do you need to follow up with the doctor for the treatment of obesity?
We recommend a monthly visit for someone steadily losing weight without any complications or side effects from the medications.