Assessing the effect of weight and weight loss in obese persons with type 2 diabetes
The objective of this study was to assess specific areas of life in which obesity affects individuals with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), and changes that obese persons with T2DM experience with weight loss of varying degrees. Thirty in-depth interviews were conducted in persons identified as: age ?40 years, diagnosed with T2DM for ?2 years, on oral antihyperglycemic medications >3 months, BMI 30–35 kg/m2, having attempted to lose weight in the last 2 years. Participants (60% female, mean age 53 years, 53% Caucasian, mean BMI 32.2 kg/m2) agreed that 5% weight loss, while not reflective of an ultimate goal, would be meaningful and important; benefits were expected to accrue in physical functioning, self-confidence, blood glucose levels, and motivation to keep losing weight. Participants reported the greatest effect of weight loss on energy, physical activity, mobility, pain, and clothes/appearance. Participants reported weight affecting mood, with feelings of depression and frustration most commonly described. This research indicates that weight loss is likely to affect health-related quality of life in obese individuals with T2DM. Given the purported weight loss benefits of many emerging diabetic medications, it will be important to include measures of weight-related quality of life in future clinical trials of these agents.