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Feature Article

The cardiac complications of obesity

Elizabeth Paratz, Sonny Palmer, Justin Mariani

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Abstract

Obesity is a powerful risk factor for cardiovascular events, but accumulating data suggest that patients can remodel their hearts and improve health outcomes by losing weight.

Key Points

  • The majority of the Australian population is overweight or obese.
  • The impact of obesity on cardiovascular (CV) risk is multifactorial and self-amplifying.
  • Morbidly obese patients with coronary syndromes are prone to increased procedural complications and poorer outcomes than patients of normal weight.
  • Doctors are strongly advised to inform their patients who are obese of their elevated CV risk profile and mortality.
  • Data increasingly suggest that patients can remodel their hearts and health outcomes by losing weight.
  • Accumulating evidence from prospective trials has shown that various forms of bariatric surgery may have positive impacts on CV endpoints.

    Picture credit: © Lightspring/Shutterstock.

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