Obesity is a multifactorial condition associated with a high risk for hypertension, dyslipidaemia, Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD), diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular complications, stroke, obstructive sleep apnea, osteoarthritis, and even cancers. Despite a growing understanding of disease aetiology and advances in pharmacological therapy, obesity rates have quadrupled between 1986-2000. National statistics from Australian sources predict that normal-weight adults will constitute less than a third of the population by 2025, and that the prevalence of obesity will have increased by 65%.
To cure obesity, long-term weight loss needs to be achieved. While lifestyle interventions can be successful, long-term efficacy results are disappointing. Hence, bariatric Surgery is now considered the most effective modality for sustainable weight loss and for curing co-morbidities. NSW Health has recently invested into the largest publicly funded obesity program in Australia based at Blacktown Hospital that A) provides a multidisciplinary approach to obesity and B) funding for 100 bariatric surgeries per year. Multi-centre ethics covering three large tertiary hospitals and two research centres is approved allowing for longitudinal data collection, biobanking and data linkage.
This provides an opportunity examine the role of nutrition, lifestyle, mental health or metabolic interventions to achieve long-term sustainable outcomes in obese patient in the context of a multi- and interdisciplinary setting.
Student level: PhD
Supervisor: Professor Golo Ahlenstiel