Validity of currently used cutoff values of body mass index as a measure of obesity in Sri Lankan children

Wickramasinghe, V. P., Lamabadusuriya, S. P., Cleghorn, Geoffrey J., & Davies, P. S. (2009) Validity of currently used cutoff values of body mass index as a measure of obesity in Sri Lankan children. The Ceylon Medical Journal, 54(4), pp. 114-119.

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The aim of the study was to determine the reliability of body mass index based (BMI) cutoff values in diagnosing obesity among Sri Lankan children. Height, weight, waist circumference (WC) and hip circumference (HC) in 282 children were measured. Total body water was determined by deuterium dilution and fat mass (FM) derived using age and gender specific constants. A percentage FM of 30% for girls and 25% for boys were considered as cutoff levels for obesity. Two hundred and eighty two children (M/F: 158/124) were studied and 99 (80%) girls and 72 (45.5%) boys were obese based on % body fat. Eight (6.4%) girls and nine (5.7%) boys were obese based on International Obesity Task Force (IOTF) cutoff values. Percentage FM and WC centile charts were able to diagnose a significant proportion of children as true obese children. The FM and BMI were closely associated in both girls (r = 0.82, p < 0.001) and boys (r = 0.87, p < 0.001). Percentage FM and BMI had a very low but significant association; girls (r = 0.32, p < 0.001) and boys (r = 0.68, p < 0.001). FM had a significant association with WC and HC. BMI based cutoff values had a specificity of 100% but a very low sensitivity, varying between 8% and 23.6%. BMI is a poor indicator of the percentage fat and the commonly used cutoff values were not sensitive to detect cases of childhood obesity in Sri Lankan children.

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ID Code: 89189
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: Cited By :6
Export Date: 1 September 2015
Correspondence Address: Wickramasinghe,
Keywords: adipose tissue, adolescent, anthropometry, article, body fluid, body mass, child, female, human, male, methodology, obesity, predictive value, preschool child, reference value, reproducibility, sensitivity and specificity, Sri Lanka, statistics, validation study, Body Fluids, Body Mass Index, Child, Preschool, Humans, Predictive Value of Tests, Reference Values, Reproducibility of Results, Statistics as Topic
ISSN: 0009-0875
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences
Deposited On: 20 Oct 2015 01:07
Last Modified: 27 Oct 2015 02:20

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