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Clinical Trials Update
December 27, 2016

Physicians Can Motivate Patients to Shed Pounds

Author Affiliations

Copyright 2016 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved.

JAMA. 2016;316(24):2589. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.18408

Although international guidelines recommend that primary care physicians screen for obesity and refer patients to behavioral weight-loss programs if needed, many physicians skirt the issue. They cite lack of time, fear of offending patients, or a belief that weight-loss programs are ineffective.

However, a randomized trial that included 137 primary care physicians and 1882 obese patients in England found just the opposite. Offering patients the opportunity to attend a weight-loss program took 30 seconds of physicians’ time, was welcomed by patients, and led to weight loss.

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