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Doctors give heavy patients less respect

October 29, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
A study conducted at Baltimore's Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine finds heavier patients get less respect from doctors than patients who are at a healthy weight. Researchers asked 238 patients with an average body mass index of 32.9 to fill out questionnaires. A BMI greater than 30 is considered obese. 40 doctors also filled out the questionnaires. They answered questions regarding perceptions of each other.

The study found the doctors expressed lower respect for patients with high BMIs. The researchers note that the findings don't show a cause or effect relationship between BMI and physician respect, but they are concerned obese patients may receive lesser quality of care than patients who are at an average weight.

The study is published in the November issue of the Journal of General Internal Medicine.


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