This session will discuss issues which may arise from treating difficult patients in the bariatric setting, including identifying these challenges, and discussing possible solutions. The focus will include patients with a history of problematic adherence, substance abuse, maladaptive eating behaviors, depression, and challenging personality profiles. Case examples will be used to help the multidisciplinary team better identify these patients early on in the process. Relevant empirical data will be presented, as well as guidance and tips to assist the multidisciplinary team in treating these patients in a way that will make it easier and less stressful for both the patient and the bariatric team, and ultimately will improve patient care.


  • To illustrate various types of challenging patients and symptomatology commonly encountered by the multidisciplinary bariatric team
  • To enhance the understanding of the role of the mental health provider and how complicated cases can be addressed from different perspectives
  • To provide insight, guidance, and tips to non-behavioral-health team members on how to deal with difficult cases and make the collaborative work easier and less stressful for both the patient and the team

8:00am Introduction
Rachel Goldman, PhD
8:10am Maladaptive Eating Behaviors
Jennifer Lauretti, PhD ABPP
8:40am Substance Abuse
Lisa West-Smith, PhD LISW-S
9:10am Challenging Personality Profiles
Jessica L Lawson, PhD
9:40am Audience Q&A and Discussion: Bring your challenging cases for audience open discussion and feedback by panelists and all attendees
10:15am Adjourn