How does age affect the relationship between weight and health utility during the middle years of childhood?

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Abstract

Purpose
The limited literature examining weight status and preference-based health-related quality of life (HRQL) in young children is equivocal. This study aims to examine how the association between weight status and preference-based HRQL changes as children develop between the ages of 6 and 10 years old.

Methods
The Child Health Utility 9D (CHU-9D) was used to determine preference-based HRQL. Height and weight data were also collected and used to calculate z-BMI adjusted for age and gender. 1467 children were recruited from 54 schools across the West Midlands. Data were collected at four time points over 5 years. Impact of weight on dimensions of HRQL was assessed via the distribution of responses to CHU-9D dimensions by weight status. Multi-level regression analysis controlling for ethnicity, deprivation and other relevant co-variates was conducted to examine the relationship between weight and HRQL.

Results
There was no evidence to suggest that the weight status impacted upon the distribution of responses to CHU-9D dimensions. Correspondingly, the multi-level regression analysis found no statistically significant differences in CHU-9D scores between underweight, healthy weight, overweight and obese children.

Conclusions
The evidence surrounding the link between preference-based HRQL and weight status in children is limited. This study found no association between weight status and HRQL as measured by the CHU-9D in children between the ages of 5 and 10 years in the UK. Given this, it is recommended that future studies aiming to prevent obesity in children in their middle years do not rely solely on preference-based measures for economic evaluation, and instead focus on capturing clinical or wellbeing outcomes.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
JournalQuality of Life Research
Early online date5 Feb 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 5 Feb 2018

Keywords

  • Health-related quality of life, Child health, Obesity, CHU-9D, Utility, Child weight status