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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2013 Apr;98(4):1299-306. doi: 10.1210/jc.2012-3115. Epub 2013 Feb 26.

Update on treatment strategies for obesity.

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Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism, and Diabetes, Anschutz Health and Wellness Center, Department of Medicine, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora, CO 80045, USA.


Obesity is a disease that is defined as the accumulation of excessive amounts of body fat and is associated with increased risk of serious illness, disability, and death. In clinical practice, obesity is best assessed by calculating body mass index and measuring waist circumference. Treatment options are determined based on the body mass index, waist circumference, and adverse health consequences the patient is experiencing or is at an increased risk for facing in the future. Today, overweight and obesity impacts the majority of patients we treat in our clinical practices. Although endocrinologists are uniquely positioned to treat one of the major consequences of our current obesity epidemic, type 2 diabetes, we also need to be positioned and prepared to effectively treat one of its major causes-obesity. Type 2 diabetes and obesity are very much intertwined. Treatment of each disease affects the other. For these reasons, endocrinologists need to be experts in the treatment of obesity as well as diabetes. They should keep up with advances in obesity treatment including lifestyle, pharmaceutical, and surgical strategies. These strategies offer opportunities for improving the overall treatment for our obese patients today and will continue to improve and expand over the next decade.

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