TREAT Severe Obesity Network
Severe Obesity: The Neglected Epidemic
Severe obesity (SO) is increasing faster than obesity in adults and in children. Because it is associated with numerous comorbidities, SO accounts for more health care expenditures than any other medical condition. Furthermore, it is associated with poor pregnancy outcomes for mother, fetus, and infant and a high risk of offspring obesity carried into adulthood. Bariatric surgery is the treatment of choice for SO because nonoperative methods fail to provide medically significant durable weight loss and because it is both preventive and therapeutic.
Update 01/31/12: This letter to HHS from Shape Up America! on behalf of the TREAT Severe Obesity Network uses the latest research findings to justify the inclusion of comprehensive treatment for severe obesity — defined as obesity screening, weight management counseling and the option of bariatric surgery followed by appropriate lifelong medical care and nutritional monitoring for the severely obese — as an essential health benefit within the category of chronic disease management.
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