Study: Childhood Obesity Has More Medical Causes Than Thought | Right away

Severe obesity in minors is more likely to be a medical cause than thought, researchers from Erasmus MC-Sophia Children’s Hospital and Amsterdam’s UMC reported on Tuesday. This is true for 20 per cent of children with severe obesity, while in medical literature about 5 per cent are spoken.

According to the two medical researchers, the difference can be explained by the fact that not much attention is paid to the possible underlying medical causes.

In the Netherlands, about 18,000 children are severely obese. Nearly 300 of them participated in the investigation. With various tests and measurements, the underlying causes of their obesity are outdated.

Many rare hereditary diseases have been detected. “In these children, the cause of obesity is really in the genes,” the researchers said. “In other children, drug use or previous brain damage was the main cause of their high weight.”

The treatment of some children was adjusted after the examination. Some participants were given medications that they were not eligible for before.

“In some children with severe obesity, it may be useful to look for a medical cause for which targeted treatment can begin,” says researcher Lotte Kleinendorst. “In addition, such a diagnosis conveys a high understanding of the environment that can support children and their parents.”