David E. Arterburn, MD, MPH

David Arterburn

“It's critical that we find cost-effective ways to treat obesity while reducing weight bias and stigma. My research examines the long-term effects of behavioral, pharmaceutical, and surgical treatments and promotes shared decision-making between patients and their providers.” 

David Arterburn, MD, MPH

Senior Investigator, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute
Physician, Washington Permanente Medical Group, Internal Medicine

Biography

David Arterburn, MD, MPH, is a general internist and health services researcher who focuses on finding safe, effective, and non-stigmatizing ways to treat obesity. As an international leader in obesity research, his goal is to help individuals and families make treatment decisions that align with their values while sustaining their health over the long haul.

Dr. Arterburn's research portfolio includes studies of the impact of neighborhood environments on obesity, mindfulness-based interventions for weight loss, obesity pharmacotherapy, the long-term outcomes of bariatric surgery, and implementation of shared decision making tools and processes. He recently led the PCORnet Bariatric Study, a two-year, $4.5 million study comparing the health benefits and safety associated with the main types of bariatric surgery in 41 health systems in the United States. Funded by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), the study’s results give patients and their health care providers the information they need to decide which type of surgery is best for them. In July 2019, PCORI awarded Dr. Arterburn an additional $2.1 million to incorporate these new results into shared decision making at Kaiser Permanente Washington and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

Over the past decade, Dr. Arterburn has collaborated with Kaiser Permanente Washington's specialty leadership to implement and evaluate shared decision making with patient decision aids to support elective surgical care. The approach has shown great promise for improving the quality of health care while simultaneously lowering the costs of care in some populations.

Dr. Arterburn collaborates extensively in his research and has federally-funded projects related to obesity and bariatric surgery with investigators at University of Washington (UW), Duke University, Harvard, University of Pittsburgh, University of Michigan, Wake Forest, and the Cleveland Clinic.

Dr. Arterburn joined Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in 2006. In recognition of his contributions to science, he has been named an honorary Fellow of the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (FASMBS) and a Fellow of the American College of Physicians (FACP) and The Obesity Society (FTOS). Dr. Arterburn is past chair of the Adult Obesity Measurement Advisory Panel sponsored by the National Committee on Quality Assurance, founding chair of the Obesity Society's Health Services Research Section, and past chair of the Health Care Systems Research Network's Obesity Special Interest Group. In 2013 he co-chaired the National Institutes of Health Symposium on the Long-Term Outcomes of Bariatric Surgery. He is also an affiliate professor in the UW Department of Medicine.

RESEARCH INTERESTS AND EXPERIENCE

Recent publications

Harrington LB, Benz L, Haneuse S, Johnson E, Coleman KJ, Courcoulas AP, Li RA, Theis MK, Cooper J, Chin PL, Grinberg GG, Daigle CR, Chang JH, Um SS, Yenumula PR, Getty JZ, Arterburn DE. Bariatric Surgery and the Long-Term Risk of Venous Thromboembolism: A Population-Based Cohort Study.  Obes Surg. 2024;34(6):2017-2025. doi: 10.1007/s11695-024-07236-y. Epub 2024 Apr 30.  PubMed

Henderson K, Lewis, Sloan CE, Bessesen DH, Arterburn D. Effectiveness and safety of drugs for obesity. BMJ. 2024;384:e072686. doi: 10.1136/bmj-2022-072686.  PubMed

Lozano PM, Bobb JF, Kapos FP, Cruz M, Mooney SJ, Hurvitz PM, Anau J, Theis MK, Cook A, Moudon AV, Arterburn DE, Drewnowski A. Residential density is associated with BMI trajectories in children and adolescents: Findings from the Moving to Health study. AJPM Focus. 2024 Mar 15;3(3):100225. doi: 10.1016/j.focus.2024.100225. eCollection 2024 Jun. PubMed

Rosenberg DE, Zhu W, Greenwood-Hickman MA, Cook AJ, Florez Acevedo S, McClure JB, Arterburn DE, Cooper J, Owen N, Dunstan D, Perry SR, Yarborough L, Mettert KD, Green BB. Sitting Time Reduction and Blood Pressure in Older Adults: A Randomized Clinical Trial.  JAMA Netw Open. 2024;7(3):e243234. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2024.3234.  PubMed

Rosenberg DE, Cruz MF, Mooney SJ, Bobb JF, Drewnowski A, Moudon AV, Cook AJ, Hurvitz PM, Lozano P, Anau J, Theis MK, Arterburn DE. Neighborhood built and food environment in relation to glycemic control in people with type 2 diabetes in the moving to health study.  Health Place. 2024;86:103216. doi: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2024.103216. Epub 2024 Feb 23.  PubMed

 

Research

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Study finds bariatric surgery linked to substantially lower risk of blood clots long-term

Largest study to date helps patients weigh risks and benefits of surgery.

News

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Seattle's Sweetened Beverage Tax linked to improved public health outcomes

An evaluation with KPWHRI researchers looked at the impacts of the tax so far.

Live healthy

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Comparing different types of bariatric surgery: What’s right for you?

Based on their studies, KPWHRI researchers explain the risks and benefits. 

M2H study

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Can where you move impact future weight gain?

A new study finds that moving from low- to high-density neighborhoods might be related to reductions in weight gain.