The Psychosocial Burden of Obesity

Endocrinol Metab Clin North Am. 2016 Sep;45(3):677-88. doi: 10.1016/j.ecl.2016.04.016.


Obesity is associated with several comorbidities, including cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, osteoarthritis, and several forms of cancer. Obesity and its comorbidities also come with a significant psychosocial burden, impacting numerous areas of psychosocial functioning. The evaluation of psychosocial functioning is an important part of the assessment and treatment planning for the patient with obesity. This article provides an overview of the psychosocial burden of obesity. The article also describes the psychological changes typically seen with weight loss. A particular focus is on the psychosocial functioning of individuals with extreme obesity who present for and undergo bariatric surgery.

Keywords: Bariatric surgery; Obesity; Psychosocial functioning; Weight loss.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bariatric Surgery
  • Comorbidity
  • Humans
  • Obesity, Morbid / complications*
  • Obesity, Morbid / psychology*
  • Obesity, Morbid / surgery*
  • Weight Loss*