Increasing prevalence of childhood obesity has increased the interest in early and late indicators of gaining weight. Cell blood counts may be indicators of pro-inflammatory states. The aim was to evaluate associations of hematological parameters, including hematocrit (HTC), hemoglobin, blood cell counts and their indices with the degree of obesity in pediatric population. A total of 249; -139 morbidly obese (MO), 82 healthy normal weight (NW) and 28 overweight (OW) children were included into the scope of the study. WHO BMI-for age percentiles were used to form age- and sexmatched groups. Informed consent forms and the Ethics Committee approval were obtained. Anthropometric measurements were performed. Hematological parameters were determined. Statistical analyses were performed using SPSS. The degree for statistical significance was p≤0.05. Significant differences (p=0.000) between waist-to-hip ratios and head-to- neck ratios (hnrs) of MO and NW children were detected. A significant difference between hnrs of OW and MO children (p=0.000) was observed. Red cell distribution width (RDW) was higher in OW children than NW group (p=0.030). Such finding couldn’t be detected between MO and NW groups. Increased RDW was prominent in OW children. The decrease in mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (MCHC) values in MO children was sharper than the values in OW children (p=0.006 vs p=0.042) compared to those in NW group. Statistically higher HTC levels were observed between MO-NW (p=0.014), but none between OW-NW. Though the cause-effect relationship between obesity and erythrocyte indices still needs further investigation, alterations in RDW, HTC, MCHC during obesity may be of significance in the early life.
Childhood obesity is an ever increasing global health problem, affecting both developed and developing countries. Accurate evaluation of obesity in children requires difficult and detailed investigation. In our study, obesity in children was evaluated using new body fat ratios and indices. Assessment of anthropometric measurements, as well as some ratios, is important because of the evaluation of gender differences particularly during the late periods of obesity. A total of 239 children; 168 morbid obese (MO) (81 girls and 87 boys) and 71 normal weight (NW) (40 girls and 31 boys) children, participated in the study. Informed consent forms signed by the parents were obtained. Ethics Committee approved the study protocol. Mean ages (years)±SD calculated for MO group were 10.8±2.9 years in girls and 10.1±2.4 years in boys. The corresponding values for NW group were 9.0±2.0 years in girls and 9.2±2.1 years in boys. Mean body mass index (BMI)±SD values for MO group were 29.1±5.4 kg/m2 and 27.2±3.9 kg/m2 in girls and boys, respectively. These values for NW group were calculated as 15.5±1.0 kg/m2 in girls and 15.9±1.1 kg/m2 in boys. Groups were constituted based upon BMI percentiles for age-and-sex values recommended by WHO. Children with percentiles >99 were grouped as MO and children with percentiles between 85 and 15 were considered NW. The anthropometric measurements were recorded and evaluated along with the new ratios such as trunk-to-appendicular fat ratio, as well as indices such as Index-I and Index-II. The body fat percent values were obtained by bio-electrical impedance analysis. Data were entered into a database for analysis using SPSS/PASW 18 Statistics for Windows statistical software. Increased waist-to-hip circumference (C) ratios, decreased head-to-neck C, height ‘to’ ‘two’-‘to’-waist C and height ‘to’ ‘two’-‘to’-hip C ratios were observed in parallel with the development of obesity (p≤0.001). Reference value for height ‘to’ ‘two’-‘to’-hip ratio was detected as approximately 1.0. Index-II, based upon total body fat mass, showed much more significant differences between the groups than Index-I based upon weight. There was not any difference between trunk-to-appendicular fat ratios of NW girls and NW boys (p≥0.05). However, significantly increased values for MO girls in comparison with MO boys were observed (p≤0.05). This parameter showed no difference between NW and MO states in boys (p≥0.05). However, statistically significant increase was noted in MO girls compared to their NW states (p≤0.001). Trunk-to-appendicular fat ratio was the only fat-based parameter, which showed gender difference between NW and MO groups. This study has revealed that body ratios and formula based upon body fat tissue are more valuable parameters than those based on weight and height values for the evaluation of morbid obesity in children.