DDW News

AGA symposia to explore multidisciplinary approach to obesity treatment

Obese patients need a multidisciplinary team to help them achieve a healthy weight, and no one is better suited to lead the team than a gastroenterologist.

That’s the notion underlying two AGA Committee Sponsored Symposia on Monday that will explore current concepts in obesity treatment, including the interdisciplinary team approach to patient care.

The first symposium, Multidisciplinary Treatment of Obesity: Success Through Teamwork, will feature five presentations highlighting recent research findings in diet and nutrition, behavioral management, tailoring individual therapies and real-world experience in a population-based health-care system.

The second symposium, Innovation in Obesity Treatment: Endoscopic and Practice, will focus on new endoscopic approaches and new practice models as health care continues to move to a value-based system.

“New research is transforming our understanding of obesity and the old paradigms of treatment,” said Sarah Streett, MD, AGAF, clinical associate professor of gastroenterology and hepatology and clinical director of inflammatory bowel disease at Stanford University Medical School, CA. “This research has come together in ‘POWER, a Practice Guide in Obesity and Weight Management Education.’”

Sarah Streett, MD, AGAF

Dr. Streett, who will serve as the moderator of both symposia, said the POWER white paper was developed by AGA in conjunction with multiple professional organizations and societies. One of the key principles is addressing obesity as a chronic relapsing disease that benefits from a multidisciplinary approach and long-term therapy.

“Obesity was long thought of as nothing more than calories-in versus energy expended,” Dr. Streett said. “It turns out that none of us are the same in terms of how we handle our energy. There are variations in the ways we break down calories, how and where we store energy and how we retrieve those stores. There’s also a web of genetic, physiologic, microbial and environmental factors at work.”

Gastroenterologists have historically taken the lead in dealing with disorders that relate to nutrition and are strengthening that connection, Dr. Streett said, with a new generation of endoscopic bariatric therapies, team-based treatment approaches and practice models that support these new methodologies.

“Coordination of new therapies in a multidisciplinary approach provides the opportunity to treat patients in ways we have not been able to do before,” she said. “Our patients need help to combat this disease, not just its sequelae. We need to work together along with our colleagues to fight the obesity epidemic, and now is the time to do it.”

Please refer to the DDW Mobile App or the Program section in Monday’s DDW Daily News for the time and location of this and other DDW® events.

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