Researchers find that screening children for heart disease risk helps to identify parents at risk

December 05, 2006

Screening children for risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease can help identify parents at risk for the condition, providing an opportunity for medical intervention in both children and their parents, according to research at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.

Researchers studied a community-based sample of 94 families - including 108 parents and 141 children - and found child/parent association was strong for cardiovascular risk factors including body mass index, waist circumference, systolic blood pressure, triglycerides and total cholesterol. The study was led by Evelyn Cohen Reis, MD, a pediatrician and researcher in the Division of General Academic Pediatrics at Children's.

Results of the study are published online in the December issue of Pediatrics, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Among its findings:Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, killing more than 910,000 people annually, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The likelihood of developing cardiovascular disease increases with risk factors such as hypertension, obesity and metabolic abnormalities. The nation's burgeoning childhood obesity epidemic is associated with the increasing prevalence of these risk factors, according to Dr. Reis.

"Because children access primary care more frequently than adults, screening them for cardiovascular disease risk factors can also help identify parents who are at risk," said Dr. Reis, an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. "Given the long lead time between the detection of risk factors and the onset of disease, universal screening of children would provide ample opportunity for intervention in children and their parents. The interventions could range from diet and exercise to medical treatment."
Community partners for this study are the Urban League of Pittsburgh and the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.

For more information about Dr. Reis or the Division of General Academic Pediatrics at Children's, please visit

Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh

Related Obesity Articles from Brightsurf:

11 years of data add to the evidence for using testosterone therapy to treat obesity, including as an alternative to obesity surgery
New research covering 11 years of data presented at this year's European and International Congress on Obesity (ECOICO 2020) show that, in obese men suffering from hypogonadism (low testosterone), treatment with testosterone injections lowers their weight and improves a wide range of other metabolic parameters.

Overlap between immunology of COVID-19 and obesity could explain the increased risk of death in people living with obesity, and also older patients
Data presented in a special COVID-19 session at the European and International Congress on Obesity (ECOICO 2020) suggests that there are overlaps between the immunological disturbances found in both COVID-19 disease and patients with obesity, which could explain the increased disease severity and mortality risk faced by obese patients, and also elderly patients, who are infected by the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 disease.

New obesity guideline: Address root causes as foundation of obesity management
besity management should focus on outcomes that patients consider to be important, not weight loss alone, and include a holistic approach that addresses the root causes of obesity, according to a new clinical practice guideline published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal)

Changing the debate around obesity
The UK's National Health Service (NHS) needs to do more to address the ingrained stigma and discrimination faced by people with obesity, says a leading health psychologist.

Study links longer exposure to obesity and earlier development of obesity to increased risk of type 2 diabetes
Cumulative exposure to obesity could be at least as important as actually being obese in terms of risk of developing type 2 diabetes (T2D), concludes new research published in Diabetologia (the journal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes [EASD]).

How much do obesity and addictions overlap?
A large analysis of personality studies has found that people with obesity behave somewhat like people with addictions to alcohol or drugs.

Should obesity be recognized as a disease?
With obesity now affecting almost a third (29%) of the population in England, and expected to rise to 35% by 2030, should we now recognize it as a disease?

Is obesity associated with risk of pediatric MS?
A single-center study of 453 children in Germany with multiple sclerosis (MS) investigated the association of obesity with pediatric MS risk and with the response of first-line therapy in children with MS.

Women with obesity prior to conception are more likely to have children with obesity
A systematic review and meta-analysis identified significantly increased odds of child obesity when mothers have obesity before conception, according to a study published June 11, 2019 in the open-access journal PLOS Medicine by Nicola Heslehurst of Newcastle University in the UK, and colleagues.

Obesity medicine association announces major updates to its adult obesity algorithm
The Obesity Medicine Association (OMA) announced the immediate availability of the 2019 OMA Adult Obesity Algorithm, with new information for clinicians including the relationship between Obesity and Cardiovascular Disease, Diabetes Mellitus, Dyslipidemia, and Cancer; information on investigational Anti-Obesity Pharmacotherapy; treatments for Lipodystrophy; and Pharmacokinetics and Obesity.

Read More: Obesity News and Obesity Current Events is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to