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CON Webinar #5: Answers to Viewers' Questions

Click here to view the webinar on our archive page.

Dr. Sean Wharton answers viewers' questions following his webinar 'Obesity Treatment in Canada: What are the options?' (June 29, 2016).

Dr. Wharton, do you currently prescribe meds for weight loss?


Is this something that you would suggest family/primary care physicians get on board with?

Liraglutide 3.0mg (Saxenda).

How do you think "obesity" should be diagnosed when the current trends towards HAES is so prevalent in many health professional fields?

I agree with health at every size, so i discourage weighing and assigning BMIs, I recommend discussing and addressing health concerns and how to stay healthy if patient have no medical conditions.  If their medical condition is directly associated with their elevated weight, ie: severe NASH, severe OA associated with weight, OSA associated with weight then you will need to discuss methods of weight reduction to improve the condition, and those methods include lifestyle, medications and surgery.

I am wondering what contraindications are there for prescribing Liraglutide? 

A family or personal history of medullary thyroid cancer and previous pancreatitis.

What are your thoughts on why physicians are not required to become better educated on obesity? Their ignorance contributes to the problem (ie: shaming fat people can cause low self esteem, emotional issues and using food as comfort)?

Obesity is a medical condition is new and there is a significant overlap in the social media with this condition leading to a poor understanding of this condition, as we think of it in social terms instead of medical terms.  We don't do this with diabetes, cancer or heart disease, yet obesity leads to all of these conditions.  With a greater understanding of the science behind adipose cells and gut hormones that effect the way the brain handles energy, we will appreciate obesity as a scientific medical field, if we address it only as lifestyle, eating better and moving more, it will always be relegated to a non medical concern.