Comparison of rates of overweight and obesity in a community sample and in veterans with multiple sclerosis.

TitleComparison of rates of overweight and obesity in a community sample and in veterans with multiple sclerosis.
Publication TypeJournal Article
2009
AuthorsMcMullen KA, Bamer AM, Johnson KL, Amtmann D
JournalInternational Journal of MS Care
Volume11
IssueS2
Pagination38-39

Introduction: Although people with multiple sclerosis (MS) often have limited physical mobility, little is known about the prevalence of overweight and obesity in this population. This study estimates the prevalence of overweight and obesity in a community sample of people with MS from Washington State surveyed in 2008. The results are compared with prevalence rates in individuals with MS enrolled in the Veterans Administration (study in press) and with national rates of overweight and obesity. Methods: Self-reported weight and height were used to calculate body mass index (BMI, kg/m2). Subjects were classified into BMI categories: underweight (BMI <18.5), normal weight (BMI 18.5–24), overweight (BMI 25–29), and obese (BMI =30). Results: The proportions of males with MS in the Washington sample (n = 81) in the four weight classifications are as follows: 2.5% underweight, 38.2% normal weight, 46.9% overweight, and 12.4% obese. The proportions of females with MS in the Washington sample (n = 386) are as follows: 2.6% underweight, 42.8% normal weight, 31.1% overweight, and 23.6% obese. In comparison, using a test of proportions, 42.8% (P = .46) and 21.2% (P = .054) of men and 28.0% (P = .30) and 25.0% (P = .62) of women veterans with MS were overweight and obese, respectively. In the general population, prevalence rates of overweight and obesity (National Health and Nutrition Examination survey) among males are 68.8% and 28.1% and among females are 61.7% and 34.0%, respectively. Conclusion: Males with MS in Washington appear to have similar rates of overweight as males with MS in the VA, but trended toward decreased rates of obesity. Women with MS in Washington seem to have similar rates of overweight and obesity as women with MS in the VA. Both samples with MS have lower rates of overweight and obesity than the national sample. It appears that overweight and obesity are significant issues for some people with MS and may contribute to adverse health outcomes.

http://www.ijmsc.org/doi/pdf/10.7224/1537-2073-11.S2.1

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