A Metabolic Profile of Doctor-Diagnosed Overweight Children
Background: The opportunity of early identification of children with weight issues has not yet been fully utilized in the clinical setting. For more effective utilization of office-based prevention strategies, we conducted this study to identify the metabolic risk factors increasing the likelihood of doctor's early notification of child's weight issue.
Data and Method: We used data collected from six cross-sectional biennial surveys (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 1999-2012) with un-weighted total samples of 14,966 (including 5,617 overweight/obese) children aged 8-17 years.
Results: Over 85% of the overweight children had been seen by a healthcare provider at least once within the past year, yet only 29.7% (SE=0.83) of all overweight/obese children had been notified as being overweight by the healthcare providers that saw them. The metabolic factor consistently associated with being notified as overweight was BMI equal or above 95 percentile (obese) [OR =5.32 (95%CI=4.17, 6.79) vs. overweight]. Hypertension increased the likelihood of appropriate notification only for boys [4.47 (1.84, 10.9) vs. normal BP]. Compared with overweight peers free of hypertension, hypertensive overweight girls had an equal likelihood of being appropriately notified by their doctor about excessive body weight [1.04 (0.35, 3.13) vs. normal BP].
Conclusions: Severely overweight children were more likely to be notified by a healthcare provider of their unhealthy weight. Comorbidity with hypertension significantly increased the likelihood among boys but not girls. Additional studies are warranted to examine the gender difference and to explore effective strategies to improve the issue of early identification of obesity in a clinical setting.
Experimental Biology Annual Meeting (EB)
Twarog, John, Nikita Patel, Jian Zhang.
"A Metabolic Profile of Doctor-Diagnosed Overweight Children."
Biostatistics, Epidemiology, and Environmental Health Sciences Faculty Presentations.