Role of the Healthcare Professional
OPTIFAST VLCD must be taken under the supervision of a healthcare professional such as a Pharmacist, Doctor, Specialist or Accredited Practising Dietitian.
Research has shown that having the support and guidance of a healthcare professional will make the program more successful. As a healthcare professional you can tailor the plan to suit your patients’ specific likes and dislikes, medical conditions, nutritional needs, physical activity levels and lifestyle.
If your patient has a co-existing medical condition then you may need to monitor them more closely or even adjust their medication dosage.
It is recommended that once a patient has commenced on the Intensive level of the OPTIFAST VLCD Program they should be followed up fortnightly for check-ups, weight and waist circumference monitoring, advice and encouragement.
Patients can be classified as low medical risk, or high medical risk when following a VLCD. For all patients, regular monitoring of weight, BMI, waist circumference and blood pressure is recommended during the Intensive Level of the OPTIFAST VLCD Program.
Regular blood monitoring is important during the Intensive level of the OPTIFAST VLCD Program for ‘high risk’ patients because of the risk of electrolyte imbalance. Please see below for the recommended blood tests and medical monitoring during the Intensive Phase of the OPTIFAST VLCD Program.
Definition of risk level for patients following a VLCD
|High Medical Risk Patient||Low Medical Risk Patient|
|BMI>27 plus co-morbidities||No co-morbidities|
|Taking prescribe medications during the VLED||No prescription medications|
|Greater than 65 years of age||Less than 65 years of age|
Medical Monitoring Guidelines for all patients
Medical Monitoring Guidelines for High Risk Patients
|Assessment||Baseline Measures||6 Weeks||Completion of Intensive Phase|
|Liver function tests||✓||If required||✓|
|Fasting Glucose||✓||If required||✓|
|Uric acid||✓||If required||✓|
|Full Blood Count||✓||If required||✓|
|Iron Studies||✓||If required||✓|
|Vitamin D||✓||If required||✓|
|Calcium & Parathyroid (in patients on long term anticonvulsants)||✓||If required||✓|