Article Text

  1. C. S. Snyder1,
  2. M. Heim1,
  3. D. S. Moodie1,
  4. G. Rosenthal1
  1. * Ochsner Clinic, New Orleans, LA; *Cleveland, OH.


Background Obesity is an epidemic in pediatric patients. The purpose of this study was to review the results of a unique program to facilitate pediatric health and weight loss.

Methods All patients ≤ 18 years old enrolled in the program. At enrolment and discharge, body measurements were recorded. The program was composed of 12 weeks of participation in activities encouraging weight loss/maintenance such as weight training, cardioexercises, and dietary consultation for family. Weight and height measurements were compared pre- and postprogram. In addition, comparisons between Katrina and non-Katrina enrollees were made. The hypothesis was that patients lost weight and grew significantly taller.

Results Eighty participants, with 53 completing the program. The average age was 10.9 years, with 64% female. The mean weight change for the entire group was + 1 pound (range −12 to 23) (p = .26), whereas mean height increased 0.65 inches (range 0-2.5) (p < .001). Simple regression analysis of weight change versus height change showed that height did not predict weight change. In a multiple regression of weight change on group (Katrina versus non-Katrina) were significant with the Katrina group, height-/weight-adjusted change was 11.7 pounds greater than non-Katrina (p < .0001). In the non-Katrina group, the mean weight change was −0.214 pounds (range −12 to +13.5), the mean height change was 0.7 inches (range 0-2.5) (p < .0001). In this non-Katrina group, using simple regression, height change did predict weight change. For every inch change in height, a change in weight of 3.8 pounds would be predicted (p < .0016).

Conclusions This program's goal of facilitating pediatric weight loss has yet to be achieved. Children affected by Katrina gained significantly more weight than controls. Children do grow taller during the study, potentially adding weight. Further longitudinal studies are needed on this patient population to see if goals are achieved later.

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