Obesity services

Our services

Obesity is the medical term for having too much fat stored in your body for good health. When people gain weight through a ‘positive energy balance’, that is more energy (food and drink) coming into the body than is being spent through activity and exercise, the surplus energy is stored mainly in fat cells that are present throughout the body. Nothing has to ‘go wrong’ for this process to happen.

Urgent advice: Covid-19 - Obesity

Our Obesity Team is currently experiencing an unprecedented volume of calls. If you need to contact the team for information, please consider emailing  rebecca.richards@addenbrookes.nhs.uk

In light of coronavirus (COVID-19) we have made the following adjustments to our upcoming clinics in order to limit footfall through the hospital and to offer you some protection by keeping them at home as much as possible.

Being seriously overweight (a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or above) increases your risk of severe illness from coronavirus (COVID-19) and so you must be particularly stringent in following the social distancing measures. These are steps you can take to reduce social interaction between people. This will help reduce the transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19).

  • Avoid contact with someone who is displaying symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19). These symptoms include high temperature and/or new and continuous cough
  • Avoid non-essential use of public transport when possible
  • Work from home, where possible. Your employer should support you to do this. Please refer to employer guidance for more information
  • Avoid large and small gatherings in public spaces, noting that pubs, restaurants, leisure centres and similar venues are currently shut as infections spread easily in closed spaces where people gather together
  • Avoid gatherings with friends and family. Keep in touch using remote technology such as phone, internet, and social media
  • Use telephone or online services to contact your GP or other essential services

Everyone should be trying to follow these measures as much as is practicable.

All routine obesity appointments clinics from Monday 16th March will be replaced with a telephone consultation.

Please keep your clinic appointment time free, and you will be called within a three hour window of your original appointment time. 

We will be postponing assessments and new starts for our Intensive Weight Management Programme.

Bariatric education sessions are on hold for the time being. Surgical, medical and Intensive Weight Management Reviews will be modified but maintained as part of a telephone consultation.

Screening for coronavirus will NOT be undertaken by the Obesity Clinic. It is undertaken via the NHS 111 service.

We thank you for your patience during this time; we will update you all when new information is available.

Please take time to read the guidance on the NHS 111 website in relation to the COVID-19 infection.

Information for patients

At your first appointment you will be called by one of the clinic nurses to have your weight, height, neck circumference and blood pressure taken. You may also be asked to provide a urine sample.

You will then be seen by one of the multi-disciplinary team who will complete a thorough assessment on you. This is an important appointment as we will be trying to investigate why you have gained weight and how your weight affects you. We also want to understand what you may have tried already to lose weight.

You will have some blood tests taken at this visit as some of the tests are not readily available outside of Addenbrooke’s Hospital.

After our assessment is completed, we will have an idea of how our service can help you. This will be discussed in a multi-disciplinary team meeting which we hold twice a week.

Our multi-disciplinary team meeting is an opportunity to discuss patient cases to determine the best weight management plan for you on an individual basis. We strongly believe that you, the patient, are the centre of the team and we need you to be committed to working with us to achieve the best possible results.

We offer a range of treatment options which we will discuss with you, and we will offer you an option which best suits your needs. Some of our treatments are done on a one-to-one basis and some in a group setting.

The majority of our treatment programmes take place in the hospital setting but there are opportunities in some cases to be seen in the community setting. Unfortunately, in some cases despite a person wanting to lose weight, it may not always be the right time for them. Embarking on a weight management programme which is unsuccessful can be detrimental to a person’s confidence and hamper future weight loss attempts.

Referal information

As a team we firmly believe in working with other health professionals to ensure patients with obesity receive the highest quality, evidence based and clinically effective care. We are happy to discuss your needs and where possible work with you to fulfil these. Please contact our obesity secretary should you wish to discuss your individual or team needs.