Shaina Eckhouse, MD, earns Obesity Medicine Board Certification
Shaina R. Eckhouse, MD, a bariatric surgeon in the Washington University Weight Loss Surgery Program has been certified by the American Board of Obesity Medicine (ABOM) as an ABOM diplomate. Dr. Eckhouse is 1 of 4 diplomates within the field of surgery for ABOM diplomates in the state of Missouri. ABOM diplomates are physicians who undergo rigorous training in obesity medicine and an extensive examination process to achieve this designation.
The American Board of Obesity Medicine serves the public and the field of obesity medicine by maintaining standards for assessment and credentialing physicians. Certification as an ABOM diplomate signifies specialized knowledge in the practice of obesity medicine and distinguishes a physician as having achieved competency in obesity care. ABOM collaborates with the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) to administer the annual credentialing exam.
Currently, there are more than 3,375 ABOM diplomates throughout the United States and Canada.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 40 percent of U.S. adults cope with obesity, which is associated with a higher risk for heart disease, cancer, diabetes, stroke and other musculoskeletal and vascular problems. Obesity has been officially recognized as a disease by the American Medical Association since 2013.
However, physicians often have little or no training in weight management and nutrition and are unfamiliar with appropriate management and treatment guidelines.
“The growth of obesity medicine board certification mirrors the rise in interest among physicians seeking a more evidence-based approach to treating patients coping with obesity,” said Dana Brittan, ABOM executive director.
“The certification process provides physicians with tools, resources and knowledge to enhance their skills and help their community address the obesity epidemic, one patient at a time,” said Rekha Kumar, MD, medical director for ABOM.
Dr. Eckhouse joined the faculty as an assistant professor in the Section of Minimally Invasive Surgery at Washington University in Saint Louis after completing her general surgery residency at the Medical University of South Carolina and her minimally invasive and bariatric surgery fellowship at Duke University. She earned her medical degree from the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. Dr. Eckhouse focuses on the treatment of obesity in adult and adolescent patients using advanced laparoscopic techniques. Her research interests including quality improvement and outcomes research in patients undergoing bariatric surgery. According to Dr. Eckhouse,” adding the board certification in obesity medicine will allow me to more comprehensively manage and treat the disease of obesity in my pre- and post-operative patients undergoing bariatric surgery.’