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Revista da Associação Médica Brasileira

Print version ISSN 0104-4230


PEREIRA, Patrícia Feliciano et al. Waist circumference as indicator of body fat and metabolic alterations in teenagers: comparison among four references. Rev. Assoc. Med. Bras. [online]. 2010, vol.56, n.6, pp.665-669. ISSN 0104-4230.

OBJECTIVE: Assess diagnostic validity of four reference tables for waist circumference in female teenagers in order to detect lipid alterations, hyperinsulin, elevated homeostasis model assessment (HOMA), hyperleptinemia and excess of body adiposity. METHODS: A total of 133 female subjects, ranging from 14 to 19 years opf age , were evaluated. All adolescents were recruited from public schools in Viçosa/MG. Blood samples were collected for determination of fasting plasma cholesterol total, LDL, HDL, triglycerides, insulin and leptin. Percentage of body fat was determined through tetrapolar electrical bioimpedance. Using the smallest abdominal measure it was possible to determine waist circumference and calculated values of sensibility, specificity, positive and negative predictive values. Waist circumference contingency tables were obtained using four criteria: Freedman et al., 1999; Taylor et al., 2000; McCarthy et al., 2001; e Moreno et al., 2007. RESULTS: In general, sensibility values were low for circumferences assessed and the highest values were obtained for the table of Mc Carthy et al., on the other hand, specificity values were high considering the table of Freedman et al. The positive predictive values were more relevant for total cholesterol and body fat percentage. CONCLUSION: Cutoffs for waist circumference used by Mc Carthy et al. were the most appropriate for populational assessments. Freedman's et al. proposal is appropriate for clinical use since it presents higher specificity. In addition, it can substitute high costs exams, out of the professionals' reach such as insulin and leptin.

Keywords : Obesity; Adolescent; Waist circumference; Metabolic syndrome X; Diagnosis.

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