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Long-term effects of a non-intensive weight program on body mass index and metabolic abnormalities of obese children and adolescents

Rita Ann Kubicky12*, Christopher Dunne12, Debika Nandi-Munshi1 and Francesco De Luca12

Author Affiliations

1 Section of Endocrinology and Diabetes, St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, Department of Pediatrics, Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, USA

2 St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, Section of Endocrinology and Diabetes, 3601 A Street, Suite 3303, Philadelphia, PA, 19134, USA

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International Journal of Pediatric Endocrinology 2012, 2012:16  doi:10.1186/1687-9856-2012-16

Published: 8 June 2012



Previous studies have demonstrated positive effects of short-term, intensive weight-loss programs in obese children.


We evaluated the long-term effects of a non-intensive weight management program on the BMI, glycemic measures and lipid profiles of obese youth.


Retrospective chart review of 61 obese children followed at our Weight Management Center. During visits, dietary changes and regular physical activity were recommended. Anthropometric and laboratory parameters were evaluated.


At the initial visit, the mean age was 11.1 ± 2.6 years. The follow-up period was 47.3 ± 11.1 months; the number of outpatient visits per year (OV/yr) was 2.9 ± 0.9. At the end of the follow-up, the whole group exhibited decreased BMI z-score and LDL-cholesterol when compared to the initial visit. In the subset of subjects in whom OGTT was performed, 2-hour glucose and peak insulin were decreased. Compared to children with ≤ 2 OV/year, those with > 2 OV/year (3.19 ± 0.7) exhibited a significant decrease in their BMI z-score, LDL-cholesterol, 2-hour glucose, and peak insulin.


Our study suggests that a periodical (~ 3 OV/yr) evaluation in a non-intensive, long-term weight management program may significantly improve the degree of obesity and cardiovascular risk factors in childhood.

Obesity; Weight loss; Dyslipidemia; Impaired glucose tolerance; Insulin resistance