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Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2013 Sep;52(9):836-44. doi: 10.1177/0009922813491312. Epub 2013 Jun 10.

A delayed-control trial examining the impact of body mass index recognition on obesity-related counseling.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Division of Child Development and Community Health, University of California, San Diego, 4305 University Avenue, San Diego, CA 92105, USA.



Rates of body mass index (BMI) calculation and plotting remain low. We examined whether providing a BMI wheel and brief education to pediatric residents and attendings would increase rates of "BMI recognition" and obesity-related counseling.


A delayed-control design was used to evaluate a 20-minute intervention. A total of 1640 records of well-child visits were reviewed to determine the proportion of records in which BMI was calculated and plotted and counseling provided.


In clinic A, there was a significant increase in the proportion of records in which BMI was recognized from pre- to postintervention (P < .01). No changes in clinic B occurred until after the delayed intervention. Obesity-related counseling was more likely to occur if BMI was recognized.


Brief education and BMI wheel increased rates of BMI recognition. BMI recognition was associated with increased obesity management. Additional efforts should be incorporated to further increase BMI recognition and assist providers in treating these children.


Body mass index (BMI); growth charts; obesity management; patient care; pediatric obesity; physician behavior

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