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Adjunctive therapies for obesity: VLEDs, pharmacotherapy and bariatric surgery

Janet L Franklin, Arianne N Sweeting, Alice A Gibson, Ian D Caterson



Although lifestyle interventions remain the cornerstone of obesity treatment, this article highlights additional approaches to management that may help reduce and maintain weight. These adjunctive therapies include the role of the multidisciplinary team in obesity management, and the use of very low energy diets, pharmacotherapy and bariatric surgery.

Key Points

  • Obesity is a multifactorial disease requiring a comprehensive and often diverse management approach to both the disease itself and its related comorbidities.
  • Adjunctive therapy, including pharmacotherapy and very low energy diets, can be used to aid weight loss and maintenance.
  • Multidisciplinary obesity clinics are best placed to address the complex causes of obesity and its related comorbidities.
  • Bariatric surgery should be considered for patients who have BMI above 40 kg/m2 or BMI above 35 kg/m2 with comorbidities.
  • Lifestyle intervention remains the cornerstone of treatment irrespective of the type of adjunctive therapy used.