Obesity: The Disease and Its Management

Released On
August 16, 2021

Expires On
August 16, 2022

Media Type

Completion Time
60 minutes

Primary Care


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Jointly provided by The Potomac Center for Medical Education and Rockpointe.


This activity is supported by an educational grant from Novo Nordisk.

Credit Available

  • Physicians — maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)
  • Physicians (AAFP) — maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)
  • Physicians — maximum of 1.0 ABIM MOC Point(s)

All other healthcare professionals completing this course will be issued a statement of participation.

Target Audience

The intended audience for this educational initiative is primary care physicians, who are the primary clinicians responsible for the management of obesity.

Program Overview

Obesity is a growing public health crisis, with the obesity prevalence among US adults of 42.4%. The American Medical Association recognized obesity as a disease in 2013 and the Obesity Society and the Obesity Medicine Association have also issued statements defining obesity as a disease. However, most clinicians have received little or no education about obesity. Obesity management begins with lifestyle changes and counseling, with the addition of pharmacotherapy if needed, and if these measures are ineffective, referral to an obesity medicine specialist and possibly to a metabolic and bariatric surgeon. Unfortunately, many patients are not offered these recommended management strategies.

The educational program “Obesity: The Disease and Its Management” will provide clinicians with a greater understanding of the disease of obesity, including its etiology and physiologic effects, and management strategies, including the efficacy and safety of anti-obesity medications and how and when to incorporate them into individualized management plans.


Welcome and Introductions
Obesity: Causes and Effects
Managing Obesity
Q&A Session

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this activity, participants should be better able to:

  • Discuss factors which influence the development of obesity
  • Describe the physiologic effects of obesity
  • Assess the efficacy and safety of agents approved to manage obesity and those in lateā€stage development
  • Develop individualized management plans for patients with obesity



Robert F. Kushner, MD

Director, Center for Lifestyle Medicine
Northwestern Medicine
Professor, Departments of Medicine and Medical Education
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Chicago, IL


Robert F. Kushner, MD is Professor of Medicine and Medicine Education at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, and Director of the Center for Lifestyle Medicine in Chicago, IL, USA. After finishing a residency in Internal Medicine at Northwestern University, he went on to complete a post-graduate fellowship in Clinical Nutrition and earned a Master’s degree in Clinical Nutrition and Nutritional Biology from the University of Chicago. Dr. Kushner is past-President of The Obesity Society (TOS), the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN), the American Board of Physician Nutrition Specialists (ABPNS), and a founder and past-Chair of the American Board of Obesity Medicine (ABOM). He was awarded the ‘2016 Clinician-of-the-Year Award’ by The Obesity Society, John X. Thomas Best Teachers of Feinberg Award at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in 2017, and the Friend Award by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Weight Management Group in 2020.

Dr. Kushner has authored over 250 original articles, reviews, books and book chapters covering medical nutrition, medical nutrition education, and obesity, and is an internationally recognized expert on the care of patients who are overweight or obese. He is author/editor of multiple books including Nutrition and Bariatric Surgery (CRC Press, 2015), Lifestyle Medicine: A Manual for Clinical Practice (Springer, 2016), Obesity Medicine, Medical Clinics of North America (Elsevier, 2018), Creating a Lifestyle Medicine Center (Springer, 2020), and Primary Care: Evaluation and Management of Obesity (Wolter Kluwer, 2022). His latest popular book is Six Factors to Fit: Weight Loss that Works for You! (Eat Right Press, 2020). Dr. Kushner’s research interests include medical and obesity education, and lifestyle and pharmacological approaches to obesity.


Donna H. Ryan, MD

Professor Emerita
Pennington Biomedical Research Center
New Orleans, LA


Donna H. Ryan, MD is Professor Emerita at Pennington Biomedical in Baton Rouge, LA, and current President of World Obesity Federation. She is Associate Editor-in-Chief of the journal Obesity and has authored more than 200 publications, primarily on obesity. Dr Ryan’s research focuses on nutrition, obesity and obesity comorbidities. She has been an investigator for various US National Institutes of Health-sponsored studies, including Pounds Lost, DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension), DPP (Diabetes Prevention Program) and the Look AHEAD study.

Dr. Ryan’s continuing interests focus on translation of effective weight management into primary care practices. Dr Ryan served as Co-Chair on the expert panel for the 2013 ACC/AHA/TOS evidence-based Guidelines on the Evaluation and Management of Overweight and Obesity in Adults and was a panel member of the 2015 Endocrine Society Systematic Evidence Review and Guidelines for Medications that Affect Body Weight. She is Co-Chair of the Steering Committee SELECT, a cardiovascular outcome trial of semaglutide.

Physician Accreditation Statement

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of the Potomac Center for Medical Education and Rockpointe. The Potomac Center for Medical Education is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Physician Credit Designation

The Potomac Center for Medical Education designates this enduring material for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

For questions regarding CME/MOC credit or the evaluation, please email contact@potomacme.org.

ABIM MOC Designation Statement

Successful completion of this CME activity, which includes participation in the evaluation component, enables the participant to earn up to 1.0 Medical Knowledge MOC points in the American Board of Internal Medicine's (ABIM) Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program. It is the CME activity provider’s responsibility to submit participant completion information to ACCME for the purpose of granting ABIM MOC credit.

To recieve CME credit and/or MOC points, you MUST pass the post-test and complete the evaluation. For ABIM MOC points, your information will be shared with the ABIM through PCME's ACCME Program and Activity Reporting System (PARS). Please allow 6-8 weeks for your MOC points to appear on your ABIM records.

MIPS Credit Designation

Completion of this accredited CME activity meets the expectations of an Accredited Safety or Quality Improvement Program (IA_PSPA_28) for the Merit-based Incentive Payment Program (MIPS).

In order to fulfill requirements for MIPS improvement activity, participants will need to fill out 2 brief follow-up surveys at 30- and 90-days post-activity.

AAFP Credit Designation Statement

The AAFP has reviewed Obesity: The Disease and Its Management and deemed it acceptable for up to 1.00 Enduring Materials, Self-Study AAFP Prescribed credit. Term of Approval is from 08/16/2021 to 08/16/2022. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Disclosures of Conflicts of Interest

The Potomac Center for Medical Education (PCME) adheres to the policies and guidelines, including the Standards for Commercial Support, set forth to providers by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) and all other professional organizations, as applicable, stating those activities where continuing education credits are awarded must be balanced, independent, objective, and scientifically rigorous.

All persons in a position to control the content of a continuing medical education program provided by PCME are required to disclose any relevant financial relationships with any commercial interest to PCME as well as to learners. All conflicts of interest are identified and resolved by PCME in accordance with the Standards for Commercial Support in advance of delivery of the activity to learners.

Program Faculty, Steering Committee, Authors, and Content Developers

The faculty, authors and content developers reported the following relevant financial relationships that they or their spouse/partner have with commercial interests:

Robert F. Kushner, MD

  • Grant/Research Support: Epitomee
  • Honoraria: Novo Nordisk (Advisory Board), Weight Watchers (Advisory Board)

Donna H. Ryan, MD

  • Consultant/Independent Contractor: Alyvant, Boehringer Ingelheim, Epitomee, Gila Therapeutics, ifa Celtics, Janssen, Naturally Slim, Novo Nordisk, Phenomix, ReDesign Health, Roman and Sanofi
  • Speaker's Bureau: Novo Nordisk
  • Stock Shareholder: Epitomee, Gila Therapeutics, Phenomix, ReDesign Health, Scientific Intake, Xeno Bioscience

Brian Jack, MD: Nothing to disclose.

Planners and Managers
The planners and mangers reported the following relevant financial relationships that they or their spouse/partner have with commercial interests:

Terry Ann Glauser, MD, MPH: Nothing to disclose.

Content Reviewers
The content reviewers reported the following relevant financial relationships that they or their spouse/partner have with commercial interests:

Katie Propst, PhD: Nothing to disclose.

Instructions for Participation and Credit

There is no fee for this activity. To receive credit, participants must take the pre-test, view this CME/AAFP/MIPS/MOC activity in its entirety, and then complete the post-test, with a score of 75% or better, and evaluation. The estimated time for completion of this activity is 1 hour. To receive their certificates, participants must demonstrate mastery of the presented material via the post-test. Participant is allowed to take the post-test multiple times.

Course Viewing Requirements

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Mozilla Firefox 23.0+ for Windows, Mac OS, or Linux
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Supported Phones & Tablets:
Android 4.0.3 and above
iPhone/iPad with iOS 6.1 or above

Disclosure of Unlabeled Use

The contents of some CME activities may contain discussions of non-approved or off-label uses of some agents mentioned. Please consult the prescribing information for full disclosure of approved uses.


This activity is designed for educational purposes. Participants have a responsibility to utilize this information to enhance their professional development to improve patient outcomes. Conclusions drawn by the participants should be derived from careful consideration of all available scientific information. The participant should use his/her clinical judgment, knowledge, experience, and diagnostic decision-making before applying any information, whether provided here or by others, for any professional use.

Contact Information

For CME questions please contact: contact@potomacme.org.

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