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Bariatric & Metabolic Surgery Program

Facts about Obesity

Obesity is a leading preventable cause of death worldwide, with increasing prevalence in adults and children, and authorities view it as one of the most serious public health problems of the 21st century.

The health factors that are associated with obesity are alarming. Despite increasing national and local attention, the epidemic of obesity in our country continues to increase:

  • About 94 million adults in the United States are either overweight or obese.
  • In Pennsylvania, 28.5% of our population is currently obese.  In 1995, no state had an obesity rate above 20 percent. Now, all but one does.

What is Obesity?
Obesity is a medical condition in which excess body fat has accumulated to the extent that it may have an adverse effect on health, leading to reduced life expectancy and/or increased health problems. A person is considered obese if he or she weighs 20 percent or more over his or her ideal body weight or has a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or more.

Click here to calculate your BMI

What is Morbid Obesity?
Morbid obesity is an excess of body fat, or weight of 100 pounds over ideal body weight, or have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or more. Morbid obesity increases the risk of developing cardiac and endocrine disturbances, including coronary artery disease and diabetes mellitus, as well as some kinds of cancer. These are potentially dangerous conditions that can lead to disability and/or an early death.

Overweight and obesity are proven risk factors for:

  • Diabetes
  • Cardiovascular problems
  • Heart disease
  • High cholesterol
  • Stroke
  • Hypertension
  • Gallbladder disease
  • Musculoskeletal problems
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Venous Stasis Disease
  • Sleep Apnea and other respiratory illness
  • Certain Cancers: uterine, breast, colorectal, kidney, and gallbladder

Obesity is also associated with:

  • Fertility issues
  • Complications of pregnancy
  • Menstrual irregularities
  • Hormone abnormalities
  • Urinary stress incontinence
  • Psychological disorders (depression)
  • Increased surgical risk
  • Increased risk of death

To schedule an appointment for a consultation with a bariatric surgeon at St. Mary Medical Center, call 215-710-5711.