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What are the effects of excess weight?

(9 Posts)
pastimperfect Wed 15-Feb-17 13:54:48

I have a relative who is morbidly obese. I have no idea of their weight, it could be 30+ stones.

I know they are struggling. They get out of breath just walking to the kettle. They struggle to walk because their feet are so swollen. They cannot bend over. They have ulcers on both shins, where it looks like the skin has burst open. They can no longer get upstairs, but claim they are. It's heartbreaking to witness. They seem to be in a lot of pain - physical and emotional.

I'm trying to get information about the physical effects that this weight is having on them. Are they, for example, effectively walking on broken feet? what makes them so breathless - is it just that they are so big that the lungs can't cope?

MollyHuaCha Wed 15-Feb-17 16:34:10

Are they getting help? I think such excessive weight probably impacts every organ in the body.

WhatWouldLeslieKnopeDo Wed 15-Feb-17 17:24:54

Is your relative diabetic? That can lead to foot/leg problems.

Are they receiving any medical help?

The breathlessness could be any number of things, from "just" being very unfit and overweight, to a more serious medical condition.

PollyPerky Wed 15-Feb-17 19:27:22

The heart struggles to pump enough oxygen to the lungs, and round the body when they move. Additionally they may have some arterial clogging up going on so heart is less efficient. Think how we all puff a bit if we carry a heavy suitcase around all day long and multiply that by 20 stones which is what you are describing.

Idefix Wed 15-Feb-17 19:59:44

Abdominal fat can make it harder for the muscles to work and this can cause loss of lung capacity.

The swelling in the feet may be a sign of cardiac disease, the same fluid in the feet/lower limbs can be found in their lungs.

These problems may be caused by other diseases such a copd, asthma may be causing the breathlessness.

I agree it is deeply distressing to observe someone living with so much pain and discomfort.

Gingernaut Wed 15-Feb-17 20:07:03

Pickwickian Syndrome or Obesity Hypoventilation Syndrome.

Obesity causing sleep apnoea. This causes the suffer to snore and basically suffocate on their fat.

pastimperfect Thu 16-Feb-17 13:11:48

Help is accessible, but they won't engage in anything. The GP - and we as the family - can't force them to let us help. They say they are hardly eating, but that can't possibly be true. My sibling has found empty takeaway packaging, a bit like how an alcoholic hides empty bottles.

They won't eat things like salad or lean meat, they always go for deep fried options. Pies. Fatty stuff.

Unfortunately I don't live close by, so am unable to help on a day to day basis.

WhatWouldLeslieKnopeDo Thu 16-Feb-17 14:15:24

I'm sorry past that must be very difficult for you all. But as you say, you cannot force them to accept help. Perhaps they will have a wake up call of some sort. It must be incredibly miserable for them living in such pain flowers

Zo94 Thu 16-Feb-17 15:21:31

Hi, it could lead to diabetes, heart attack, stroke, lack of self-esteem, depression, overall poor health..
It's unfortunately all in their mind so the key is to change their habits and mindsets. They should probably seek therapy to see what are they lacking from their life so they won't compensate with over-eating. A doctor who can advise them on healthy diet and exercise that are suitable for them.
Good luck!

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