Cognitive-behavioral treatment reduces attrition in treatment-resistant obese women: results from a 6-month nested case-control study.

OBJECTIVE: The aim of this nested case-control study was to compare the effectiveness of cognitive-behavioral treatment (CBT) for treatment-resistant obese (body mass index [BMI] ≥ 30 kg/m²) women compared with standard dietary treatment. The main outcome measures were attrition and weight loss success.

METHODS: We designed a 6-month case-control study, nested within a cohort of adult (age ≥ 18 years) treatment-resistant (history of at least two previous diet attempts) obese women. Cases were 20 women who were offered CBT sessions. Controls (n=39) were randomly selected from the source population and matched to cases in terms of baseline age, BMI, and number of previous diet attempts.

RESULTS: Compared with controls, cases were significantly more likely to complete the 6-month program in both age-adjusted (odds ratio [OR]=2.94, 95% confidence interval [CI]=1.05-8.97) and multivariate-adjusted (OR=2.77, 95% CI=1.02-8.34) analyses. In contrast, cases were not more likely to achieve weight loss success in age-adjusted (OR=1.32, 95% CI=0.86-1.67) and multivariate-adjusted (OR=1.21, 95% CI=0.91-1.44) analyses.

CONCLUSIONS: Compared with a standard dietary treatment, CBT was significantly more effective in reducing attrition in treatment-resistant obese women, without differences in terms of weight loss success.

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