Methods: we analyzed cross-sectional clinical encounter data. Obese adults were obtained from the 2005 National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (N=2458).
Results: a third of obese adults received an obesity diagnosis (28.9%) and approximately a fifth received counseling for weight reduction (17.6%), diet (25.2%), or exercise (20.5%). Women (OR=1.54; 95% CI: 1.14, 2.09), young adults ages 18-29 (OR=2.61; 95% CI: 1.37, 4.97), and severely/morbidly obese individuals (class II: OR 2.08; 95% CI: 1.53, 2.83; class III: OR 4.36; 95% CI: 3.09, 6.16) were significantly more likely to receive an obesity diagnosis. One of the biggest predictors of weight-related counseling was an obesity diagnosis (weight reduction: OR=5.72; 95% CI: 4.01, 8.17; diet: OR=2.89; 95% CI: 2.05, 4.06; exercise: OR=2.54; 95% CI: 1.67, 3.85). Other predictors of weight-related counseling included seeing a cardiologist/other internal medicine specialist, a preventive visit, or spending more time with the doctor (p<0.05).
Conclusions: most obese patients do not receive an obesity diagnosis or weight-related counseling.
Practice implications: preventive visits may provide a key opportunity for obese patients to receive weight-related counseling from their physician.
2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.