Preferences for Weight Loss Treatment Amongst Treatment-Seeking Patients with Severe Obesity: A Discrete Choice Experiment

Michelle Queally, Edel Doherty, Francis Finucane, Ciaran O'Neill*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: Treatment options for weight loss vary considerably with regard to risks and benefits, but the relative importance of treatment characteristics in patient decision-making is largely unknown, particularly amongst patients with severe obesity. Developing such services requires insight into the preferences of recipients for service attributes.

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to quantify, using a discrete choice experiment, the preferences of treatment-seeking patients with severe obesity within the Irish population regarding different attributes of various obesity treatments.

METHODS: Within a cohort of patients with severe obesity attending a hospital-based weight management programme, patients' attitudes to and perceptions of three distinct treatment modalities were compared to those regarding not having treatment. The treatments included a structured lifestyle modification programme, lifestyle modification alongside weight loss medication, and bariatric surgery.

RESULTS: On average, patients with severe and complicated obesity who were attending a weight management programme were more enthusiastic about participating in a programme to help improve their diet and physical activity than they were about having surgery if the methods of treatment had equivalent results and costs.

CONCLUSION: The findings provide insights into preferences that might assist the development of more appropriate treatments for severe obesity.

Original languageEnglish
JournalApplied Health Economics and Health Policy
Early online date23 Jan 2020
Publication statusEarly online date - 23 Jan 2020


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