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

Arterburn D. Microvascular outcomes in patients with diabetes after bariatric surgery. Ann Intern Med. 2019 Apr 2;170(7):507-508. doi: 10.7326/L19-0015. PubMed

Drewnowski A, Arterburn D, Zane J, Aggarwal A, Gupta S, Hurvitz PM, Moudon AV, Bobb J, Cook A, Lozano P, Rosenberg D. The Moving to Health (M2H) approach to natural experiment research:a paradigm shift for studies on built environment and health. SSM Popul Health. 2018 Dec 28;7:100345. doi: 10.1016/j.ssmph.2018.100345. eCollection 2019. PubMed

Lewis KH, Fischer H, Ard J, Barton L, Bessesen DH, Daley MF, Desai J, Fitzpatrick SL, Horberg M, Koebnick C, Oshiro C, Yamamoto A, Young DR, Arterburn DE. Safety and effectiveness of longer-term phentermine use: clinical outcomes from an electronic health record cohort. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2019;27(4):591-602. doi: 10.1002/oby.22430. PubMed

Li X, Fireman BH, Curtis JR, Arterburn DE, Fisher DP, Moyneur É, Gallagher M, Raebel MA, Nowell WB, Lagreid L, Toh S. Validity of privacy-protecting analytical methods that use only aggregate-level information to conduct multivariable-adjusted analysis in distributed data networks.  PubMed

Haneuse S, VanderWeele TJ, Arterburn D. Using the E-Value to Assess the Potential Effect of Unmeasured Confounding in Observational Studies. JAMA. 2019;321(6):602-603. doi: 10.1001/jama.2018.21554. PubMed

 

news release

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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

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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