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Matern Child Health J. 2014 Apr;18(3):613-24. doi: 10.1007/s10995-013-1285-y.

Infant obesity and severe obesity growth patterns in the first two years of life.

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Department of Political Science, Texas Tech University, 113 Holden Hall Boston and Akron Streets, Lubbock, TX, 79409-1015, USA,


Distinguishing an obesity growth pattern that originates during infancy is clinically important. Infancy based obesity prevention interventions may be needed while precursors of later health are forming. Infant obesity and severe obesity growth patterns in the first 2-years are described and distinguished from a normal weight growth pattern. A retrospective chart review was conducted. Body mass index (BMI) growth patterns from birth to 2-years are described for children categorized at 5-years as normal weight (n = 61), overweight (n = 47), obese (n = 41) and severely obese (n = 72) cohorts using WHO reference standards. BMI values were calculated at birth, 1-week; 2-, 4-, 6-, 9-, 12-, 15-, 18-months; and 2- and 5-years. Graphs of the longitudinal Analysis of Variance of Means of BMI values identified the earliest significant divergence of a cohort's average BMI pattern from other cohorts' patterns. ANOVA and Pearson Product Moment correlations were also performed. Statistically significant differences in BMI values and differences in growth patterns between cohorts were evident as early as 2-6 months post-birth. Children who were obese or severely obese at 5-years demonstrated a BMI pattern that differed within the first 2-years of life from that of children who were normal weight at 5-years. The earliest significant correlation between early BMI values and 5-year BMI value was at 4-months post-birth. The study fills an important gap by demonstrating early onset of an infant obesity growth pattern in full-term children who were healthy throughout their first 5 years of life.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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