Personal Attitudes Toward Weight in Overweight and Obese US Hemodialysis Patients

J Ren Nutr. 2017 Sep;27(5):340-345. doi: 10.1053/j.jrn.2017.03.004. Epub 2017 May 19.


Objective: Overweight and obesity have become increasingly common among end-stage renal disease patients on hemodialysis. Yet, little attention has been given to what hemodialysis patients themselves think of their weight, how they perceive it affects their health, and their attitudes about or desire for weight reduction. We explored these issues using a survey that we designed specifically for the dialysis population.

Design and methods: Sixty-six chronic hemodialysis patients from a US urban center with a body mass index ≥25 kg/m2 and stable weight were recruited to participate in a cross-sectional study. The 12-question weight-related survey was validated by retesting a random portion of the study population.

Results: Based on test-retest results, the survey had good to excellent validity. Seventy-nine percent of patients were black, 49% were male, 29% were overweight, and 71% were obese. In general, the patients underestimated their weight excess though 73% were interested in weight loss, of whom nearly half reported attempting to do so mostly through diet and exercise. The majority of participants interested in losing weight felt that doing so would improve their physical and emotional health. The most common barrier to weight reduction was a belief that it was too difficult (55%), followed by a lack of motivation, money, time, resources, and knowledge. Diet was the most common weight loss strategy (85%) considered, whereas bariatric surgery was the least common (6.1%).

Conclusions: A majority of overweight and obese hemodialysis patients believe their excess weight is adversely impacting their health and quality of life and therefore wish to lose weight.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Attitude to Health*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Body Weight
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Diet
  • Exercise
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / complications
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / psychology
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation
  • Obesity / complications
  • Obesity / psychology*
  • Overweight / complications
  • Overweight / psychology*
  • Quality of Life
  • Renal Dialysis*
  • Urban Population
  • Weight Loss