Managing Overweight and Obese Patients – Nurse, Nurse Practitioner
Obesity is a serious health problem and a common diagnosis in the United States, affecting over 40% of adults and 20% of adolescents (12-19 years). Obesity-related conditions include heart disease, type 2 diabetes, osteoarthritis, hypertension, certain types of cancer, and dyslipidemia, among others. Patients with obesity have annual medical costs that are $1,429 greater than those of people with a non-obese body mass index (BMI). Overall, this condition costs the US healthcare system over $147 billion annually. Long-term consequences for children with obesity include a greater likelihood of being obese as an adult and increased severity of obesity-related diseases in adulthood. As we learn more about obesity, there is an increasing interest in programs and treatments that help prevent its development and lessen its negative effects. This issue will focus on non-drug strategies for managing excess weight, FDA-approved medications for the treatment of obesity, and factors that influence weight gain, including medications used for the treatment of chronic diseases.