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The relationship between obesity, hyperglycemia symptoms, and health-related quality of life among Hispanic and non-Hispanic white children and adolescents
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  • Alternative Title:
    BMC Fam Pract
  • Description:

    The current study was conducted to evaluate the effects of overweight, hyperglycemia symptoms, Hispanic ethnicity, and language barriers on health-related quality of life (HRQoL) among children and adolescents.


    Parents'/guardians of a population based sample of 5530 children between ages 3 and 18 were administered the parents' version of the KINDL® survey instrument to assess HRQoL in children and adolescents. Multiple linear regression analysis was used to assess relationships between HRQoL, body mass index, and hyperglycemia symptoms categories.


    The mean age of children was 10.6 (SD = 4.3). The mean KINDL® total score was 79.7 (SD = 11.6) and the mean physical functioning score was 81.9 (SD = 20.3). Male children exhibited better physical health as compared to the female children (p < 0.001). Overweight children had lower overall HRQoL (p = 0.008). However, the association was not significant for the four of the six subscales including the physical health domain. Children with hyperglycemia symptoms and a family history of diabetes also had significantly lower overall and physical health HRQoL (p < 0.05). Children diagnosed with diabetes and in lower income strata also had significantly lower overall HRQoL (p < 0.05). No significant association between the Hispanic ethnicity and HRQoL was observed. However, those who reported mostly speaking Spanish exhibited significantly lower overall HRQoL (p = 0.001).


    Results suggest that overweight may reduce overall quality of life among children, though it does not directly influence physical functioning. However, hyperglycemia symptoms may affect both overall health and physical functioning. Findings also suggest the need for developing programs directed at overcoming language barriers that may face Spanish-speaking children or their parents. Furthermore, targeting children who have hyperglycemia symptoms with public information campaigns may be more appropriate than targeting overweight children.

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