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.
Bariatric surgery; health services research; economics and risk adjustment; pharmaceutical outcomes research
Obesity prevention and control
Pharmaco-epidemiology, pharmacogenetics, pharmaceutical outcomes research
Shared decision making
Obesity prevention and control
Arterburn DE, Kushner RF, Courcoulas AP. Long-term complications of bariatric surgery-reply. JAMA. 2021;325(2):186-187. doi: 10.1001/jama.2020.22487. PubMed
Maciejewski ML, Smith VA, Berkowitz TSZ, Arterburn DE, Mitchell JE, Olsen MK, Liu CF, Livingston EH, Funk LM, Adeyemo A, Bradley KA. Association of bariatric surgical procedures with changes in unhealthy alcohol use among US Veterans. JAMA Netw Open.2020 Dec 1;3(12):e2028117. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.28117. PubMed
Chao GF, Chhabra KR, Yang J, Thumma JR, Arterburn DE, Ryan AM, Telem DA, Dimick JB. Bariatric surgery in Medicare patients: examining safety and healthcare utilization in the disabled and elderly. Ann Surg. 2022 Jul 1;276(1):133-139. doi: 10.1097/SLA.0000000000004526. Epub 2020 Nov 17. PubMed
Moore DD, Arterburn DE, Bai Y, Cornejo M, Crawford CL, Drewnowski A, Gray MF, Ji M, Lewis KH, Paz S, Taylor B, Yoon TK, Young DR, Coleman KJ. The Bariatric Experience Long Term (BELONG): factors related to having bariatric surgery in a large integrated healthcare system. Obes Surg. 2020 Oct 30. doi: 10.1007/s11695-020-05045-7. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed
Arterburn DE, Toh S, Williams N, Anau J, Courcoulas A, Tavakkoli A, Stilwell D, Tuzzio L, Lewis CC, Wilcox MN, McTigue KM. Translating stakeholder-driven comparative effectiveness research into practice: the PCORnet Bariatric Study. J Comp Eff Res. 2020 Oct 1. doi: 10.2217/cer-2020-0156. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed
An evaluation with KPWHRI researchers looked at the impacts of the tax so far.
Based on their studies, KPWHRI researchers explain the risks and benefits.
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An explanation from KPWHRI researchers about discussing treatment options with a medical provider.