Without being directly involved in medical records, but having a general idea on data stored in folders, the summary where that would be written would be useful for a doctor to scan through. Doctors (and nurses and other medical staff) shouldn't have to spend the time reading through the entire medical record for every visit - so the most relevant data is summarized quickly.
Obese, or formerly obese, might create an emotional reaction in us, but to the medical practitioner it just defines possible risk factors that may still exist in spite of the healthy weight indicated in more recent records. (Another medical notation I've known someone to have a negative emotional reaction to was the number of miscarriages. But that is also important information in some cases; not a judgement of the patient.)
Really, though, like Tanya said - I think it's great to see FORMERLY obese. The longer it stays FORMERLY, the better. We don't have to be proud or happy of where we were, but we can be proud of what it took to leave that behind and get to where we are.
Blue, Lethie, or Jennifer May - I answer to them all (aka Astraxialus in NaNoWriMo) San Jose, CA BLC#20 & BLC#21 - ONYX OUTLAW
With the coverage of studies that show that the metabolism of weight reduced individuals is different from the metabolism of people who have 'always' been at the same weight, I like the idea of my medical records indicating that I am weight reduced. Maybe that's a better term than formerly obese, although I'd actually prefer that one since it indicates the extent of the weight reduction.
I don't worry about labels. Some are wrong (and people are allowed to be wrong) and some phrases are used to describe something I don't know about. I remember how I found out that "as is" in a real estate contract has a specific meaning that wasn't what it sounded like. "Formerly Obese" is probably the same kind of thing; it probably has a medical implication you don't know about unless you ask. And you can ask, you know. Just remember that most people don't mind the term "obese" when preceded by "formerly".
Nell Reston, Virginia
No one ever got up in the morning wishing she'd eaten more the night before.
Original Goal: 114. Current old lady goal: 106.
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Fitness Minutes: (51,134) Posts: 1,183 10/10/12 9:26 A
First of all, I will have to say that I find it funny that you're ANOTHER one I know of that is leaving Wisconsin for Tennessee (I did it last year, and I know of a few others that have done it as well). I do hope you enjoy the Volunteer State as much as I have so far. And if you end up in Memphis, look me up! :)
Granted, a lot of the health impacts of obesity can be reversed by losing the weight and continuing with a healthy lifestyle, but I'm sure there are some issues that we may still have issues with for a certain period of time.
Wish I had a better answer for you...I did bring my health records with me from Wisconsin, though, since they had documentation of my diagnosis with a chronic health condition and some other medication information that my current physicians needed (primary care and OB/Gyn).
Words are just words. Meanings don't change when we change a label to something else. The underlying meaning just gets transferred to the new word. If we are upset by a word, we have not come to terms with what it is representing. Those of us who are/were obese must accept it and move forward. That means either correcting it (or not) or being joyful, proud, and seriously relieved to have put it (or be putting it) in the rear view mirror.
I speak from personal experience.
Fitness Minutes: (102,467) Posts: 3,795 10/10/12 7:42 A
I find it really interesting that you took this offensively, because I actually refer to mySELF as formerly obese. I'm really proud of myself for no longer being there and want people to know that if I changed they can, too. If I doctor read that off to me from my records, I'd be proud.
So much better to be formerly obese than currently. :-)
Because that is what we were. I work in a medical setting and the term obese comes when there is a huge disparity between your height and weight. Being obese is serious because of the health issues that come with it. What I didn't like about being told I was obese was that I had my head in the sand and this showed me what I really was. Also, dr's will write "well nourish" LOL...no kidding
Every day I am on the verge of making slight changes that would make all the difference in my life.
Don't make todays choices be tomorrows regret
Carol Southern CA - Pacific time
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current weight: 10.0 over
Fitness Minutes: (29,091) Posts: 248 10/9/12 9:53 P
I am not a medical person, so I don't know if there is a reason for them to need this info. Obese is such a harsh sounding word, but as I spent over a year working to get out of that category, I made some peace with it. The mental health agency where I work is made by the state to collect health data on clients and one of the conditions is obesity. I came to look at the word as just a term to describe a level of overweight. I know of one agency that weighs clients to get their BMI but won't use the "O word" because they don't want to upset them. I think I would already be upset if I went in for counseling and was told to step on a scale, LOL. Maybe we need another word for obese?
Sorry not to have a better answer to your good question of whether a history of obesity is important for your health care providers to know.
Went to the gynecologists this morning for the yearly checkup. (One of my least favorite yearly activities.) They are transferring all their records to a new computer system and were reviewing my health history. When she read off formerly obese, I guess it surprised me. I guess I hadn't really thought about the fact that yes, I will have continuing issues with the former obesity, etc. But odd that a doctor never uses that term, until you start to loose the weight, or until you loose the weight. Now it is a part of my health history that will never be removed. (Well, it might be, as I am moving to Tennessee soon, and doubt I will transfer my records.) Does one need to have that kind of a notation? I mean, they have in the charts what I used to weigh and my height, etc. Do they need to slap a label on it?
3/31/12 Trailbreaker half marathon 13.1 miles in 3 hours 13 minutes 4/20/13 Neighborhood Watch 5K 39:17.6 10/5/13 5K Grace Pet Fest 38:47.6 12/1/13 Secret City Half Marathon around 3 hours and 4 minutes 4/19/14 Butterflies for Hope 5K for Lupus 39:23.8 (I hurt my back a few days before, and though it was my first official 5K with some jogging, my back hurt, so was very slow.)
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