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Care and Treatment for Obesity

Why Choose Treatment for Obesity at University of Colorado Hospital?

The University of Colorado Hospital obesity team is committed to providing obese patients with the care and resources necessary to begin a healthy lifestyle that results in long-term weight loss success.

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Let us help you get back on track to a healthy lifestyle!

  • Call (720) 848-2650 to request an appointment with Endocrinology
  • Call (720) 848-2070 to request an appointment at the Surgical Weight Loss Center

What is Obesity?

Obesity is excessive body weight that has a negative impact a person's health. A person's level of obesity is calculated using body mass index (BMI). This is a measure of body fat in relation to your height.

A recent national survey found that over 30 percent of men and women in the United States are obese.

Obesity greatly increases
the risk of:
Obesity is also associated with other
diseases, such as:

Successfully treating obesity early minimizes or eliminates many health risks later in life!

Tests & Treatments



Serum Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone Level (TSH). Tests hormone level to detect hypothyroidism. Occasionally excessive weight gain can be related to this condition, which rarely causes more than a 10 to 20 pound weight increase.


Physical Examination. You will also have a physical exam to determine your overall health. This may include various tests to check blood pressure, cholesterol and heart function.


Treatments for Obesity


Diet and Exercise Program. Reducing calorie intake and increasing exercise is the basis of all weight loss programs.


Medication. When diet and exercise are not effective, certain medications may be prescribed. These are medications prescribed by your doctor and do not include unapproved, over the counter weight loss pills.


Surgery. Surgery is reserved for people with severe obesity or whose obesity is causing significant medical complications.


There are three major types of surgery performed (see our procedures page for more detailed descriptions).

Medical Team

Obesity specialists


Endocrinologist - a doctor who specializes in the body's hormone activity. An endocrinologist will determine the correct treatment plan based on the severity of your obesity and if there are any hormone imbalances contributing to your weight loss.


Medical Assistant - a health professional trained to assist doctors.


Registered Nurse - a nurse licensed by the state who can assist you with medical questions and provide education when necessary.


Other obesity staff


Registered Dietician - a professional trained to prevent and treat disease through the use of individual nutrients found in food and supplements. You will work with the dietician to create a meal plan to help you lose weight.


Physical Therapist - a specialist who will help you develop an individual exercise plan to work in combination with your diet. Your plan will be adjusted as necessary as you lose more weight and are capable of more activity.

Patient Education

Living with Obesity

Obesity is dangerous to your health, but it can be managed with simple lifestyle changes.


A healthy diet, exercise program and supervised medical care can help you lose excessive body weight and work toward living an active life.


Special diets and weight loss pills are not an effective method of long-term weight loss.


The most effective plan for weight loss is reducing overall calorie intake and increasing aerobic exercise.


Sample Aerobic Exercises

  • Walking
  • Running
  • Rowing
  • Swimming

Often people who lose weight do not maintain their diet and exercise plan and regain the weight they lost. Those with the greatest long-term success have made permanent lifestyle changes that include a healthy diet and exercise program.


A surgical option for the severely obese

Surgery may be an option for you if you suffer from morbid obesity and have not been successful losing weight through lifestyle changes alone. Learn about UCH's Surgical Weight Loss Center.


Obesity: Getting a Second Opinion

Losing excessive weight requires a life-long commitment to a healthy lifestyle. It is important to feel comfortable with your health care team, as you will work closely with them to manage your weight. University  of Colorado Hospital is happy to offer a second opinion and to work with you if you choose to come to our hospital for treatment.


Additional Obesity Resources


Colorado Dietetic Association


American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery    

Weight loss for morbid obesity

Should you consider weight loss surgery?

Bariatric surgery is not the best treatment for all obese patients. However, the following types of patients would probably benefit the most from this surgery:

  • People with a BMI of 40 or above (or who weigh at least twice their ideal body weight) who have failed to lose weight following a physician supervised weight loss or exercise program.
  • People with a BMI of 35 and above with significant other severe problems caused by the obesity.

Visit our Surgical Weight Loss Center pages to find out more.