David E. Arterburn, MD, MPH

David Arterburn

“It's critical that we find cost-effective ways to reduce obesity. 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 innovative 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, behavioral and lifestyle interventions for weight loss, obesity pharmaco-epidemiology, the long-term outcomes of bariatric surgery, and shared decision making related to elective surgery. 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 NIH-funded projects related to obesity and bariatric surgery with investigators at Kaiser Permanente, University of Washington (UW), Duke University, Harvard, 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.

Areas of research focus

Recent publications

Lewis KH, Arterburn DE, Callaway K, Zhang F, Argetsinger S, Wallace J, Fernandez A, Ross-Degnan D, Wharam JF. Risk of operative and nonoperative interventions up to 4 years after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass vs vertical sleeve gastrectomy in a nationwide US commercial insurance claims database.  JAMA Netw Open. 2019 Dec 2;2(12):e1917603. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2019.17603. PubMed

Smith VA, Arterburn DE, Berkowitz TSZ, Olsen MK, Livingston EH, Yancy WS Jr, Weidenbacher HJ, Maciejewski ML. Association between bariatric surgery and long-term health care expenditures among veterans with severe obesity. JAMA Surg. 2019 Oct 30:e193732. doi: 10.1001/jamasurg.2019.3732. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Saxon DR, Iwamoto SJ, Mettenbrink CJ, McCormick E, Arterburn D, Daley MF, Oshiro CE, Koebnick C, Horberg M, Young DR, Bessesen DH. Antiobesity medication use in 2.2 million adults across eight large health care organizations: 2009-2015. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2019 Oct 11. doi: 10.1002/oby.22581. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Zhu Y, Sidell MA, Arterburn D, Daley MF, Desai J, Fitzpatrick SL, Horberg MA, Koebnick C, McCormick E, Oshiro C, Young DR, Ferrara A. Racial/Ethnic Disparities in the Prevalence of Diabetes and Prediabetes by BMI: Patient Outcomes Research To Advance Learning (PORTAL) Multisite Cohort of Adults in the U.S. LID - dc190532 [pii] LID - 10.2337/dc19-0532 [doi] Diabetes Care. 2019 Sep 19. pii: dc19-0532. doi: 10.2337/dc19-0532 [Epub ahead of print] PubMed

Aminian A, Zajichek A, Arterburn DE, Wolski KE, Brethauer SA, Schauer PR, Kattan MW, Nissen SE. Association of metabolic surgery with major adverse cardiovascular outcomes in patients with type 2 diabetes and obesity. JAMA. 2019 Sep 2. pii: 2749478. doi: 10.1001/jama.2019.14231. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

 

news release

Bariatric-Surgery-Patient-Doctor-visit_1col.jpg

More hospitalizations follow gastric bypass than gastric sleeve

Large, long-term study of post-op safety of weight-loss surgery includes Dr. Arterburn and University of Pittsburgh researchers.

profile

Arterburn-profile-hiking-kids_1col.jpg

What motivates Dr. David Arterburn to study obesity?

He aims to reduce suffering from chronic illness. Plus, he's optimistic about research on body-weight regulation and on the psychology of weight-related behaviors.

KPWHRI In the Media

Fewer heart attacks, strokes, and deaths after weight-loss surgery

Weight-loss surgery can benefit people into their 60s, 70s and 80s

AARP magazine, May 13, 2019

KPWHRI In the Media

PCORnet Bariatric Study

Benefits of using a shared decision making approach for weight loss surgery

Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), Nov 4, 2019