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Behavioral Treatment for Veterans with Obesity: 24-Month Weight Outcomes from the ASPIRE-VA Small Changes Randomized Trial.

Lutes LD, Damschroder LJ, Masheb R, Kim HM, Gillon L, Holleman RG, Goodrich DE, Lowery JC, Janney C, Kirsh S, Richardson CR. Behavioral Treatment for Veterans with Obesity: 24-Month Weight Outcomes from the ASPIRE-VA Small Changes Randomized Trial. Journal of general internal medicine. 2017 Apr 1; 32(Suppl 1):40-47.

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BACKGROUND: Small Changes (SC) is a weight management approach that demonstrated superior 12-month outcomes compared to the existing MOVE!® Weight Management Program at two Veterans Affairs (VA) sites. However, approaches are needed to help graduates of treatment continue to lose or maintain their weight over the longer term. OBJECTIVE: The purpose of the present study was to examine the effectiveness of a second year of low-intensity SC support compared to support offered by the usual care MOVE! programs. DESIGN: Following participation in the year-long Aspiring to Lifelong Health in VA (ASPIRE-VA) randomized controlled trial, participants were invited to extend their participation in their assigned program for another year. Three programs were extended to include six SC sessions delivered via telephone (ASPIRE-Phone) or an in-person group (ASPIRE-Group), or 12 sessions offered by the MOVE! programs. PARTICIPANTS: Three hundred thirty-two overweight/obese veterans who consented to extend their participation in the ASPIRE-VA trial by an additional year. MAIN MEASURES: Twenty-four-month weight change (kg). KEY RESULTS: Twenty-four months after baseline, participants in all three groups had modest weight loss (-1.40 kg [-2.61 to -0.18] in the ASPIRE-Group, -2.13 kg [-3.43 to -0.83] in ASPIRE-Phone, and -1.78 kg [-3.07 to -0.49] in MOVE!), with no significant differences among the three groups. Exploratory post hoc analyses revealed that participants diagnosed with diabetes initially benefited from the ASPIRE-Group program (-2.6 kg [-4.37 to 0.83]), but experienced significant weight regain during the second year (+2.8 kg [0.92-4.69]) compared to those without diabetes. CONCLUSIONS: Participants in all three programs lost weight and maintained a statistically significant, though clinically modest, amount of weight loss over a 24-month period. Although participants in the ASPIRE-Group initially had greater weight loss, treatment was not sufficient to sustain weight loss through the second year, particularly in veterans with diabetes. Consistent, continuous-care treatment is needed to address obesity in the VA.

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