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ASGE STAR Program: Fundamentals of Obesity | 2021
Released: June 2021
Viewing Time: 8 hours

Obesity now impacts countries at all economic levels, bringing with it a wave of ill health and lost productivity. Of all high-income countries, the United States has the highest rates of overweight and obesity, with fully a third of the population obese.  This rate is projected to rise to around 50 percent by 2030. As with most health issues, the burden of obesity isn’t felt equally across all parts of society. The poor have higher rates than those with higher income. Those with less education have higher rates than those with more education. And certain minority groups-especially African American and Hispanic women-have much higher rates than other groups. Beyond North America, the regions of Europe, South and Central America, Western Pacific, and parts of Africa and Asia also have elevated obesity rates, with only a handful of areas with low and consistent levels of obesity. The worldwide spread of obesity and resulting increase in rates of chronic disease and other serious conditions threatens health systems, economies, and individual lives. Bringing the problem back under control will take multifaceted country-level as well as global-level efforts, and they cannot begin in earnest soon enough. The STAR Bariatrics program is designed to begin addressing the trends highlighted above. It’s design outlines a number of important topic areas that  give both basic obesity education on pathophysiology and treatment, but also specific training on the use of bariatric endoscopic therapies for obesity treatment. This online only program of Fundamentals of Obesity is an ASGE requirement if one desires to progress toward the higher-level parts of the ASGE STAR courses in Bariatrics for specific devices or procedural hands-on training.

It will take approximately 8 hours to complete all elements of this course.
Learning Objectives
Upon completion of this course, the learner will be able to:

  • Describe the epidemiology, physiology, pathophysiology and other factors that influence obesity.
  • Explain how to properly evaluate patients with obesity in the initial office visit.
  • Identify how to screen for eating disorders, depression, life-style, and physical traits of a patient that lead to obesity.
  • List the different types of behavior modification and obesity treatments available.
  • Understand key pharmacotherapy and obesity treatment options (e.g. medications for weight regulation and those that cause weight gain while managing patient expectations and outcomes). 
  • Compare and contrast endoscopic bariatric therapies and bariatric surgery options available for the endoscopist, and the possible adverse events of each.
Target Audience
This course is intended for endoscopists, gastroenterologists, surgeons and obesity medicine physicians who are integrating bariatric endoscopy into their practice or are affiliated with an established bariatric program.
Course Topics
There are 10 topics covered in this course, each has a pre/post assessement:

  1. Introduction to Obesity Medicine (20 minutes)
  2. Pathophysiology of Obesity (50 minutes)
  3. Initial Office Visit for Obesity (30 minutes)
  4. Obesity Treatment: Behavioral Therapy (30 minutes)
  5. Obesity Treatment: Diet Therapy (30 minutes)
  6. Obesity Treatment: Exercise in Weight Loss and Weight Maintenance (40 minutes)
  7. Obesity Treatment: Pharmacotherapy (50 minutes)
  8. Obesity Treatment: Endoscopic Bariatric Therapies (45 minutes)
  9. Obesity Treatment: Bariatric Surgery for the Endoscopist (60 minutes)
  10. Obesity Treatment: Managing non-responders or Weight regain after a Procedure (30 minutes)
After completing these topics, 2 Case Studies (15 minutes each) are presented followed by a 44 question cognitive assessment. To be considered complete and to claim CME for this course, you must score at least an 80% on this assessment. You will have 3 opportunities to achieve that score.
Course Directors
Document LearningActivityInformation 5768
Asmeen Bhatt, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor, Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition
McGovern School of Medicine
University of Texas, Houston, TX.

Christopher Chapman, MD
Director of Bariatric and Metabolic Endoscopy
Assistant Professor of Medicine
University of Chicago, Chicago, IL.

Shelby Sullivan, MD, FASGE
Associate Professor of Medicine
Director, Gastroenterology Metabolic and Bariatric Program
University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver, CO.
Daniel Bessesen, MD
University of Colorado
Denver, CO.

W. Scott Butsch, MD, MSc
Cleveland Clinic
Cleveland, OH.

Abigail Holewinski, MS, RDN
GID Bio Inc.
Longmont, CO.

Deborah Horn, DO, MPH, MFOMA
University of Texas Medicine
Houston, TX.

John Jakicic, PhD
University of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh, PA.

Samuel Klein, MD
Washington University School of Medicine
St. Louis, MO.

Robert Kushner, MD, MS
Northwestern Medicine
Chicago, IL.

Reem Sharaiha, MD, MSc
Weill Cornell Medical College
New York, NY

Erik Wilson, MD
University of Texas at Houston
Houston, TX.
Availability: On-Demand
Expires on May 01, 2026
Cost: Member: $295.00
Non-Member: $395.00
Credit Offered:
8 CME Credits
8 ABIM-MOC Points
8 Participation Credits
Contains: 13 Courses
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