Missouri State Chapter of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS)

| February 1, 2022 | 0 Comments

by Magdy F. Giurgius, MD, MBChB, MSc, FACS 

Dr. Girurgius is with Ozarks Healthcare in West Plains, Missouri.

Funding: No funding was provided.

Disclosures: The author reports no conflicts of interest relevant to the content of this article.

Bariatric Times. 2022;19(2):8.


The Missouri state chapter of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) was founded in February of 2012. Our mission statement is to pursue investigation in both the clinic and the laboratory; exchange ideas, information, and experience pertaining to bariatric surgery; promote guidelines for ethical patient selection and care; develop educational programs for physicians, paramedical persons, and the general public; promote outcome studies and quality assurance; and discuss pertinent issues specific to Missouri.

Update on initiatives. First, the Missouri chapter is currently preparing for the first annual Missouri chapter scientific meeting in February 2022, which will be held virtually because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The goal is to have it in-person every subsequent year. The event will include different bariatric surgery programs and providers around the state, to allow the melting of different expertise in one pot, with the goals as follows:

  • Maintain expertise in educating, diagnosing, and treating obesity.
  • Improve competency in using evidence based data regarding medications and other treatment modalities and interventions.
  • Improve knowledge using visuals and interactions among the audience.
  • Increase expertise in the evolution of new technology in approaches to bariatric surgery
  • Improve the domain of participation among integrated health (IH) professionals

Second, the Missouri chapter is continuing its effort to resume holding Walk from Obesity in person, but now as a concurrent event in West Plains, Columbia, and St. Louis.

Third, the Missouri chapter supports bariatric surgery and obesity medicine in rural Missouri. My team and I built this program from scratch to serve the local population, and it continues to grow to accommodate those needs.

Relevant statistics on obesity in Missouri. Obesity affects more than 32.4 percent of adults in Missouri; more than 29.7 percent of male adults in Missouri are affected by obesity, and more than 29.6 percent of female adults in Missouri are affected by obesity. The state is ranked 10th out of the 50 states impacted by obesity, and it ranks 10th in adults with Type 2 diabetes (11.5%). Adults ages 45 to 64 years are most affected by obesity in Missouri (37%).

Obesity is also a prevalent issue for the adolescent population of Missouri. Childhood obesity is a strong predictor for adult obesity. Among children aged 10 to 17 years old, 31 percent have overweight or obesity. Missouri is one of 19 states that have body mass index (BMI) screening requirements for adolescents. Additionally, adolescent bariatric surgery is taking place and evolving in our state.

National cost of obesity. Obesity has a significant affect on finances as well as health. Healthcare costs are 47 percent more expensive for individuals affected by obesity, and the estimated cost of annual obesity-related healthcare is $315.8 billion. The direct costs caused by childhood obesity are $14.1 billion. Nationwide annual costs due to obesity-related absenteeism are $4.3 billion.

Information for readers to get involved. Most bariatric surgery programs in Missouri provide an open support group forum, allowing patients to attend even if their original surgery was done with a different program. The general public can get involved through Walk from Obesity in different cities around Missouri.

Chapter Meetings 

  • Missouri State Chapter Meeting at Obesity Week 2019 in Las Vegas, NV
  • Missouri State Chapter Meeting at Obesity Week 2018 in Nashville, TN
  • Annual State Chapter Business Meeting at Obesity Week 2017 in Washington, DC
  • Annual State Chapter Business Meeting at Obesity Week 2015 in Los Angeles, CA
  • November 5th, 2014: Annual Business Meeting at Obesity Week in Boston, MA
  • November 13th, 2013: Annual Business Meeting at Obesity Week in Atlanta, GA
  • June 20th, 2012: Annual Business Meeting at Obesity Week in San Diego, CA
  • February 25th, 2012: Inaugural Meeting in St. Louis, MO

Board of Directors:

  • Dr. Magdy Giurgius, President
  • Dr. Shaina Eckhouse, Immediate Past President
  • Ms. Patsy Besson, Secretary
  • Dr. J. Chris Eagon, STAR Representative
  • Angela Britt, BC, IH STAR Representative

Past Presidents:

  • Dr. Norbert Richardson
  • Dr. James Pitt
  • Dr. J. Stephen Scott
  • Dr. J. Chris Eagon

Chapter Activities 

  • October 2015 Walk from Obesity
  • October 2014 Walk from Obesity
  • October 2013 Walk from Obesity
  • October 2012 Walk from Obesity
  • Formation of Integrated Health Group

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Category: ASMBS State Chapter Spotlight, Past Articles

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