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A Review Of The Psychosocial Aspects Of Clinically Severe Obesity And Bariatric Surgery.

David B Sarwer, Leslie J. Heinberg
Published 2020 · Psychology, Medicine
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For the past 2 decades, clinically severe obesity (operationalized as a body mass index ≥40 kg/m2) has increased at a more pronounced rate that less severe obesity. As a result, the surgical treatment of obesity (bariatric surgery) has become a more widely accepted, yet still underutilized, treatment for persons with severe obesity and significant weight-related health problems. Psychologists play a central role on the multidisciplinary team involved in the preoperative assessment and postoperative management of patients. They also have played a central role in clinical research which has enhanced understanding of the psychosocial and behavioral factors that contribute to the development of severe obesity as well as how those factors and others contribute to postoperative outcomes. This article, written specifically for psychologists and other mental health professionals who currently work with these patients or are considering the opportunity to do so in the future, reviews these contributions over the past 20 years. The article highlights how this work has become a fundamental part of international clinical care guidelines, which primarily focus on preoperative psychosocial screening. The article also outlines avenues for future research in the field, with a specific focus on the need for additional behavioral and psychosocial interventions to promote lifelong success after bariatric surgery. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).
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