The psychosocial situation of obese children: Psychological factors and quality of life
U Korsten-Reck1, K Korsten1, K Haeberle1, K Kromeyer-Hauschild3, H H Dickhuth1, E Schulz2
1Department of Rehabilitative and Preventive Sports Medicine, University Medical Center, University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany; 2Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany; 3Institute of Human Genetics and Anthropology, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Jena, Germany
Abstract: The psychosocial situation of obese children at the beginning of the Freiburg Intervention Trial for Obese Children (FITOC) program influences the course and outcome of intervention therapy. At the beginning of FITOC, mothers of 30 children (12 M age 10.5 ± 1.4, 18 F; 10.2 ± 1.3) rated the psychopathological symptoms using the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) and the quality of life of their children (Inventar zur Erfassung der Lebensqualität [ILK]). 46.6% of mothers rated their children to be disturbed (normal population group, 2% disturbed). There was no correlation between the body mass index of the child and the CBCL score. On the ILK, the obese children themselves selected “good” while the mother’s view of their childrens’ quality of life varied around “poor”. The stress on the mother increased with the degree of the child’s obesity and number of critical life events (p = 0.030). The CBCL and the ILK at the beginning of treatment serve as a good screening instrument for psychopathology and distress in children with obesity.
Keywords: obesity, childhood, screening instruments, therapy
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