Prevalence of metabolic syndrome in obese Turkish children and adolescents

Mehmet Emre Atabek, Ozgur Pirgon, Selim Kurtoglu
Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice 2006, 72 (3): 315-21

OBJECTIVE: The aim of our study was to assess the prevalence of metabolic syndrome and the other metabolic features in obese children.

METHODS: We have studied 169 obese children and adolescents (body mass index>95th percentile), 100 prepubertal and 69 pubertal, aged between 7 and 18 years. Each subject was submitted to an oral glucose tolerance test. The diagnosis of impaired glucose tolerance, type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome were defined according to modified WHO criteria adapted for children.

RESULTS: Metabolic syndrome was found in 27.2%, with a significantly higher rate among adolescents aged 12-18 years (37.6%) than among children aged 7-11 years (20%) (p < 0.001). There were no significant differences in the prevalence of metabolic syndrome by sex. The prevalences of insulin resistance, glucose intolerance and type 2 diabetes were 29, 19 and 2% among prepubertal children and 56.5, 27.5 and 4.3% among pubertal group, respectively. The prevalence of fasting hyperinsulinemia in pubertal group was significantly higher than prepubertal children (p < 0.001). Hyperinsulinemia was also more frequent in pubertal children with significant difference (20% versus 43.7%, p < 0.001). Hypertension was significantly more common in adolescents (31.8%) than children (15%) with obesity, as expected (p < 0.013). Overall, dyslipidaemia in prepubertal and pubertal groups was identified in 42 and 55%, respectively, with no significant differences (p = 0.085).

CONCLUSIONS: Type 2 diabetes mellitus and metabolic syndrome prevalences among adolescents are quite high in the urban area of Konya, central Anatolia, with abnormal lipid profiles, obesity and nutritional mistakes.

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