U of M researchers study medications to help pediatric obesity patients | KSTP.com

U of M researchers study medications to help pediatric obesity patients

Ellen Galles
Updated: August 02, 2021 06:46 PM
Created: August 02, 2021 05:25 PM

At the University of Minnesota, researchers are studying more ways to help kids who are obese.

Researchers at the U of M's Center for Pediatric Obesity Medicine (CPOM) are studying medication-based treatments in hopes they can become more common options in certain pediatric cases.

While there are a variety of obesity medications for adults, there currently aren't many options for kids.

According to Dr. Megan Bensignor at CPOM, there are only three medications to treat pediatric obesity that are FDA approved, and patients must be at least 12 years old to take them.

She also said a healthy diet and exercise aren't enough for some patients.

"This is not a matter of willpower, or not exercising enough, not eating healthy," Bensignor said. "Those are important, but they don't always cut it. You need to counteract your body's own biological instinct."

Long-term complications from obesity include cardiovascular disease, heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.

Earlier this summer, Gov. Tim Walz signed a bill that requires medical assistance coverage on weight loss and anti-obesity medication.

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