BOSTON – (May 4, 2015) – The American Diabetes Association’s (ADA) Michaela Modan Memorial Award will be presented to Osama Hamdy, M.D., Ph.D, FACE, Medical Director of the Obesity Clinical Program at Joslin Diabetes Center and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, for his abstract titled, “The Long-Term Effects of Intensive Lifestyle Intervention on Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Patients with Diabetes in a Real-World Clinical Practice: A 5-Year Longitudinal Study.” Dr. Hamdy is one of three Joslin recipients to receive an award at the 75th Scientific Sessions.

This abstract was chosen from the top abstracts submitted to the ADA in the areas of human studies on the epidemiology, complications, and prevention of diabetes.

“I'm honored to receive this prestigious award; we were lucky to have five abstracts accepted this year,” said Dr. Hamdy. “This award recognizes the hard work of the Why WAIT team at Joslin in exploring the relationship between weight reduction and cardiovascular risk in patients with diabetes.”

This study was the first to show that patients with diabetes who maintained a seven percent weight loss of their total body weight were more likely to sustain their weight loss for an extended period of time. Dr. Hamdy found that in patients who regained the weight after their initial weight loss, their glycemic control and triglycerides deteriorated with weight regain, while their lipid improvements, like reduced LDL (bad cholesterol )and increased HDL (good cholesterol), were typically upheld even with weight regain. 

“Our study demonstrated that sustained weight loss is associated with improved diabetes control for five years and blood pressure for the initial 18 months,” commented Dr. Hamdy.

Prior to this study, no one had examined the changes in cardiovascular risk factors over time in diabetes patients who maintained or regained weight from the original weight loss. This study provides further understanding that regaining the weight does eliminate some of the benefits associated with the initial weight loss. 

“This study changes the misconception that people who lose weight with non-surgical interventions will fail to maintain their weight loss beyond the six month period,” explained Dr. Hamdy. “Our patients maintained 6.4 percent weight loss after five years and approximately 53 percent of them achieved an average of nine percent weight loss.”

Aside from serving as the medical director of the obesity clinic at Joslin, Dr. Hamdy is also a Clinical Investigator in the Section of Clinical, Behavioral and Outcomes Research at Joslin. His research focuses on optimizing non-surgical methods of weight loss in diabetes patients to prevent cardiovascular complications. Dr. Hamdy and the Why WAIT team are currently investigating how medical nutrition therapy positively impacts diabetes control, gut hormones and insulin secretion. 

Dr. Hamdy received his medical and doctoral degrees from Mansoura Faculty of Medicine in Egypt and completed his fellowship in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism from University of Missouri and Harvard University.

“Dr. Hamdy and his team’s clinically validated Why WAIT weight management program, which was the basis for this abstract, is representative of the creative and patient centric innovation that is a hallmark of Joslin,” said John L. Brooks III, President and CEO of Joslin Diabetes Center.

The other recipients are George King, M.D., Chief Scientific Officer at Joslin Diabetes Center and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical Center, who will receive the 2015 Edwin Bierman Award, and Lori Laffel, M.D., M.P.H., Chief of the Section on Pediatric, Adolescent and Young Adult Diabetes at Joslin Diabetes Center and Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, who will be presented with the 2015 Outstanding Physician-Clinician Award.