More screening for reproductive issues necessary in pediatric obesity
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — There is a lack of reported connection between pediatric obesity and reproductive issues, but more research and screening in clinical practice are needed, according to findings presented at the ObesityWeek annual meeting.
These recommendations are based on research undertaken by Crystal S. Lim, PhD, assistant professor of psychology in the department of psychiatry and human behavior at the University of Mississippi Medical Center, and colleagues in which they analyzed data from electronic medical records of 426 girls with obesity (mean age, 13.9 years; mean BMI z score, 2.48; 67.1% black; 22.1% white).
Lim and colleagues found that among the study sample, 9.4% of participants (n = 40) had a reproductive problem, including polycystic ovary syndrome, irregular menses, premature adrenarche and early puberty, among others. The researchers found that PCOS specifically was found in 1.9% of the sample (n = 8).
The researchers performed t tests to assess differences in weight, HbA1c, blood pressure and cholesterol levels between those with obesity and those with obesity and reproductive problems. Analysis did not reveal meaningful differences between the two groups, although the researchers noted that the variance in cholesterol level bordered on significant.
“My co-authors and I believe that the rate of reproductive problems found in our study is an underestimate,” Lim told Endocrine Today. “Thus, there seems to be a need for physicians in multidisciplinary pediatric obesity clinics to do more thorough screenings for reproductive problems, identify reproductive problems as diagnoses in the medical chart, and if necessary, refer to specialty providers to further assess, diagnosis and treat the possible reproductive issue.” – by Phil Neuffer
Lim CS, et al. T-P-3072. Presented at: ObesityWeek; Nov. 11-15, 2018; Nashville, Tenn.
Disclosure: Lim reports no relevant financial disclosures.