Pediatric Obesity: Are We Under-diagnosing?

Noy, Liora; Walter, Michael; Matsunaga, Doris Segal; Maddock, Jay E.
April 2006
Hawaii Medical Journal;Apr2006, Vol. 65 Issue 4, p102
Academic Journal
Pediatric care providers are often discouraged by the scope and magnitude of our current childhood overweight epidemic. Numerous studies have shown the adverse consequences of pediatric obesity, ranging from short-term physical and psychosocial consequences to long-term consequences that manifest in adulthood. In this study, we investigated rates of overweight and at-risk for overweight children in a community health center in urban Honolulu, Hawai'i which serves a large multi-cultural and multi-ethnic population with a large presence of Asians and Pacific Islanders. This was done by conducting a chart review of the pediatric patients in the clinic. Twenty-four children had been formally diagnosed and recorded in their charts as obese/overweight during the last 2 years, out of 4,640 pediatric patients seen (less than 0.5%). However, according to this study, roughly 140 overweight children are seen monthly at this clinic, indicating a prevalence of more than 50%. Samoan and Micronesian children were found to be primarily impacted.


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