The following post was actually written a couple years ago and I thought I had lost it upon graduating. While cleaning out the old computer I stumbled upon it. It’s a lengthy read so I have provided the introduction, and attached the complete paper if you’re bored. The full report can be read here Obesity Report
The growing epidemic of obesity in America is giving rise to an increasing number of secondary pathologies and injuries. These pathologies include coronary artery disease (CAD), type II diabetes, and osteoarthritis (OA), the latter of which is causing an increase of total knee replacements (TKR) in America every year. Obesity causes a decrease in this population’s rehabilitation prognoses, which is attributable to both internal and external factors regarding these patients. Among these factors are a doctor’s right to decline surgery, pathological issues pertaining to obesity, patients’ abilities to safely comply with a rehabilitation regimen, and also pre-and post-operative weight loss. Doctor’s ability to decline surgery, along with obese TKR candidates’ poor prognoses, is causing increasing numbers of candidates to go without surgery. Many surgeons are denying obese patients’ requests for TKR because of their poor prognoses, but these patients argue that the only way they can lose weight to increase their prognoses is to undergo surgery.
This report reveals the benefits of incorporating a pre-and post-operative weight loss protocol involving nutritional counseling and low impact cardiovascular exercises into obese TKR patients’ pre-and post-operative therapy routines. This report also includes doctors’ reasons for the denial of obese patients’ TKR surgeries, the effects of obesity on the rehabilitation of a TKR, and a nutritionist’s and physical therapist’s beliefs about the effects of a pre-and post-operative weight loss protocol and their exercise and dietary recommendations for obese TKR candidates’ weight loss; however, this report does not offer a specific weight loss protocol involving exact food portions, exercise durations, sets, and repetitions. Implementation of a pre-and post-operative weight loss protocol for obese TKR candidates must occur as soon as possible to decrease the number of surgeries that doctors deny.
The obese TKR patients are not the only group feeling the effects of doctors’ denials. Physical therapists and the doctors themselves also must cope with the outcomes of these refusals. These members of the health care community need such a protocol to increase the quality of care they provide their patients, while the patients need the protocol to increase their chances of receiving surgery, and improving their quality of life.
If you know someone who has been denied a total knee replacement because of their BMI/weight, let them know there are options, and there are doctors who will still operate.