Background

Clinical trials have shown high rates of weight regain after completion of behavioral weight loss programs, when participants typically lose the structure of a regimented program and have to integrate new behaviors into daily life. We followed a cohort of 24 patients in the Penn Metabolic Medicine clinic (PMM) who had successfully completed one of two 14-week intensive weight management classes in 2017-2018 for one year after the completion of class. Both groups achieved significant weight loss during the program, losing 6.5% and 8.5% of their body weight, respectively. These results were presented at Obesity Week 2018. We sought to determine the durability of weight loss one year after completion of their class in a clinical practice setting.

Methods

24 PMM patients participated in a 14-week intensive weight management class in 2017 and 2018. For this analysis, we used retrospective review of electronic medical charts to determine clinic attendance (MD/NP/RD visits) and changes in weight throughout the first year following the completion of their weight management class.

Results

19 of 24 (79%) of patients were seen within the health system within one year of program completion. Of these patients, 5 (21%) lost additional weight since the program ended, 6 (25%) maintained their final class weight within 5 pounds, and 8 (33%) gained more than 5 pounds since the weekly classes ended.

Conclusions

Approximately half of participants of PMM’s 14-week weight management class either lost additional weight or maintained their final weight within one year after class completion.