MEET THE DIPLOMATE

elizabeth fryoux, md

 

Dr. Elizabeth Fryoux was born in Monroe, Louisiana and is a graduate of Millsaps College. She obtained her medical degree at LSU Health Sciences Center in Shreveport. She completed her internship at Tulane University and then internal medicine residency at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. Following a chief resident year, she joined on as faculty in the General Internal Medicine division. She is board certified in internal medicine and obesity medicine and serves as the Obesity Medical Director at UMMC. In her free time, she enjoys running, riding her Peloton bike and cooking healthy nutritious meals.

Why did you pursue obesity medicine certification? I wanted to learn more about the field of obesity medicine and obtain formal training in obesity medicine to better help my patients in Mississippi.

Many doctors have told us about the “aha” moment that stimulated their interest in obesity medicine. Do you have an obesity medicine “aha” moment that sticks out in your memory? I have always been interested in healthy living. Growing up, if I was not playing sports, I would exercise by running or in group exercise classes. I became even more interested in nutrition after I shadowed a dietician in college. I knew I wanted to incorporate all of these different aspects into my practice. Obtaining the obesity medicine certification provided those tools.

How do you currently incorporate your obesity medicine training into your practice? Initially, I started out splitting half of my time with primary care and the other half with obesity medicine. I was recently promoted to the position of Obesity Medical Director at my academic institution, University of Mississippi Medical Center, in July 2023. I currently practice obesity medicine full time while incorporating medical weight management into our existing bariatric surgery program.

Why do you believe obesity medicine certification is valuable? The obesity medicine certification is extremely valuable to understand the underlying physiology, proper management, surgical options and the psychological aspect of obesity. It allows for standardization of obesity management and gave me the skills to better treat my patients.

What is your greatest success story so far? A particular patient comes to mind who I have been working with for several years. She has lost almost 100 pounds with lifestyle modifications and anti-obesity medications. It was so rewarding to see her confidence, quality of life, and her other chronic conditions improve so significantly.

What is the biggest challenge you face in your practice? Unfortunately, there are many challenges in the practice of obesity medicine. I believe my biggest daily challenge is insurance coverage of approved anti-obesity medications.

What do you wish other physicians knew about treating obesity? I wish other physicians treated obesity as a chronic disease, like hypertension and diabetes, which requires chronic, continuous care.

Is there anything else you would like to share about your experience with obesity medicine? Obesity medicine can be very challenging, but equally rewarding. Knowledge in this field is always growing which can lead to a significant positive impact on the health and quality of life of my patients.


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