Published online Feb 15, 2015. doi: 10.4239/wjd.v6.i1.200
Peer-review started: September 20, 2014
First decision: October 16, 2014
Revised: November 13, 2014
Accepted: November 27, 2014
Article in press: December 1, 2014
Published online: February 15, 2015
AIM: To generate prevalence estimates of weight status and cardiometabolic disease risk factors among adolescents with and without disabilities.
METHODS: Analysis of the 1999-2010 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey data was conducted among 12-18 years old with (n = 256) and without disabilities (n = 5020). Mean values of waist circumference, fasting glucose, high-density-lipoprotein cholesterol, triglycerides, systolic and diastolic blood pressure and metabolic syndrome (MetS, ≥ 3 risk factors present) were examined by the following standardized body mass index (BMI) categories for those with and without disabilities; overweight (BMI ≥ 85th - < 95th percentile for age and sex), obesity (BMI ≥ 95th percentile) and severe obesity (BMI ≥35 kg/m2). Linear regression models were fit with each cardiometabolic disease risk factor independently as continuous outcomes to show relationships with disability status.
RESULTS: Adolescents with disabilities were significantly more likely to be overweight (49.3%), obese (27.6%) and severely obese (12%) vs their peers without disabilities (33.1%, 17.5% and 3.6%, respectively, P≤ 0.01 for all). A higher proportion of overweight, obese and severely obese children with disabilities had abnormal SBP, fasting lipids and glucose as well as MetS (18.9% of overweight, 32.3% of obese, 55% of severely obese) vs their peers without disabilities (9.7%, 16.8%, 36.3%, respectively). US adolescents with disabilities are over three times as likely to have MetS (OR = 3.45, 95%CI: 1.08-10.99, P = 0.03) vs their peers with no disabilities.
CONCLUSION: Results show that adolescents with disabilities are disproportionately affected by obesity and poor cardiometabolic health vs their peers with no disabilities. Health care professionals should monitor the cardiometabolic health of adolescents with disabilities.
Core tip: Our results here show that US adolescents with disabilities are disproportionately affected by obesity and are over three times as likely to have the metabolic syndrome vs their peers with no disabilities. Half of all adolescents with disabilities are overweight, obese or severely obese. In addition to the metabolic syndrome, obese adolescents with disabilities are significantly more likely than their normal weight counterparts to have increased or abnormal systolic blood pressure, lipid and fasting glucose levels, placing them at risk for cardiovascular disease and/or type 2 diabete. Health care professionals should monitor the cardiometabolic health of adolescents with disabilities.