Obesity brings with it very serious health issues that lower life expectancy. Morbidly obese men between the ages of 25-35, for example, have a 12 fold greater risk of dying prematurely compared to their normal weight counterparts.
Medical conditions that are commonly commensurate with obesity include:
- Pulmonary - obstructive sleep apnea, obesity hypoventilation syndrome, asthma.
- Cardiac - High blood pressure, Cor Pulmonale (a particular type of heart failure) caused by pulmonary hypertension, Coronary Artery Disease.
- Gastrointestinal, abdominal - gallstones (associated with cyclic weight loss/gain).
- Gastro-oesophageal Reflux Disease, recurrent ventral hernias, urinary incontinence.
- Endocrine - Diabetes, menstrual irregularity, infertility, hirsutism, hyperlipidemia, hypercholesterolemia.
- Musculoskeletal - degeneration of knees and hips, disc herniation, chronic low back pain.
- Skin - multiple disorders, most related to diabetes and difficulty with hygiene.
- Cancer risk - breast, endometrium, colon, prostate.
Obesity can also have negative psychological consequences stemming from social isolation and discrimination such as low self-esteem and depression. For patients with a BMI > 40, it is usually fair to think of the excess weight as the actual underlying cause for most of the medical conditions outlined above. Surgical treatment of the obesity in such cases goes after the root of the problem.
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