How does excessive weight cause problems?

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 28,271
    Health Expert William McCarthy explains how excessive weight cause problems.

    William McCarthy

    Dr. William McCarthy is the Medical Director at the NOVA ABC Weight Loss Clinic

    Dr. McCarthy has been in private medical practice in the Northern Virginia area since 1976.  He received a BS (Magna cum laude) at Xavier University in Cincinnati, his M.D. degree at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C, and served his internship and residency in Family Practice at the University of Wisconsin Hospitals in Madison, Wisconsin. Dr. McCarthy is board certified in bariatric medicine, which is the medical specialty of weight  disorders.  At this time, there are only approximatly 300 board certified bariatricians in the United States.

     He has served as the Chief of Staff and board member of Potomac Hospital here in Woodbridge.  He founded the nationally recognized Continuing Medical Education program at Potomac Hospital and served as it director for over twenty years.  He has been repeatedly voted by his peers as one of the top physicians in the D.C area in the Washington Consumer Checkbook.  Dr. McCarthy has also served as a board member of the Northern Virginia Foundation for Health and Medical Care and on the board of Physician’s Care insurance.  He was the team physician for the Prince William professional baseball team for many years, chosen by the Pirates, Yankees, Cardinals, and White Sox.   Dr. McCarthy has an outstanding reputation as a physician and educator, known not only for his broad knowledge of medicine, but also as a compassionate and caring physician.  After years of treating the health consequences that were brought on by excess weight, Dr. McCarthy decided to shift the focus of his care to the treatment and prevention of the actual cause of these medical problems.  Dr. McCarthy has attended numerous conferences, intensively studied the most current medical literature, and has spent time working with well known, experienced bariatricians in order to enhance his knowledge in the science of weight loss, metabolism, nutrition, exercise, and behavioral aspects of weight control.  He now dedicates his experience and knowledge to those who lives and health are adversely affected by their excess weight.

    Host: How does excessive weight cause problems?

    Dr. William McCarthy: Excessive weight causes medical problems primarily in two-fold manner. The first is that the abdominal fat. Fat cells around the abdomen region actually secrete substances we call them 0:19 or cytokines, but they really hormone like substances. The medical profession is actually starting to look at fat cells as an endocrine organ and as these substances are secreted most of these are inflammatory in nature, they cause problems in blood vessels and problems throughout the body. They may also cause what we call insulin resistance and these conditions lead to heart disease, to stroke, to hypertension, diabetes and all the other consequences that we see.

    The second phase is that obesity is a mechanical problem. It may cause an increased pressure on the neck or chest and what may happen is the person could have sleep apnea, which is problem with breathing at nighttime, which can even have fatal consequences. It may cause breathing problems because the person s body is constricted or the contour is changed because of the obesity itself.

    Obesity can also cause mechanical problems by just the pressure on the back, the knees and the hips. It is a very common cause of arthritis and may lead eventually to a hip surgery or chronic back pain or chronic disability.