Risk factors for metabolic syndrome among overweight and obese Hispanic children attending a pediatric clinic in New Braunfels, Texas
Childhood obesity is a persistent problem in the U.S., especially among Hispanics. Health complications like hypertension, type II diabetes, and metabolic syndrome (Met-S) are being seen at younger ages, and current screening procedures may be inadequate. This study sought to describe the risk factors for Met-S present in a sample of 106 overweight and obese Hispanic children, aged 5-14 years, participating in Nutrition and Exercise Start Today (NEST), a randomized weight management intervention trial at a rural health clinic in New Braunfels, Texas; and to determine associations between these factors and other clinical and socio-demographic characteristics linked to obesity. Baseline data was analyzed for the prevalence of large waist circumference (WC), elevated blood pressure (BP), high fasting serum glucose and serum triglycerides (TG), and low serum HDL cholesterol, in relationship with selected sample characteristics. Main findings included high baseline prevalence rates of large WC (77%), reduced HDL (57%), and elevated BP (30%). WC was significantly associated with BMI percentile and the serum liver function test alanine aminotransferase (ALT) by Fisher's exact test (p<0.001 and p=0.032, respectively), while there were significant relationships between HDL and both female gender and ALT. BMI percentile and ALT were associated with all sets of Met-S diagnostic criteria examined. BMI percentile also had a strong association (p=0.005) with total number of Met-S risk factors, while ALT had a weaker association (p=0.093). WC is a low-cost, simple measure whose use may improve clinic surveillance for childhood obesity and complications like Met-S. WC, BP, HDL and ALT may be used as part of targeted screening for obesity complications like Met-S, particularly in situations where resources are limited.
Medicine|Public health|Hispanic American studies
Long Parma, Dorothy A, "Risk factors for metabolic syndrome among overweight and obese Hispanic children attending a pediatric clinic in New Braunfels, Texas" (2012). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI1519891.