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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2011  |  Volume : 14  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 212-218

Obesity in adult Nigerians: A study of its pattern and common primary co-morbidities in a rural Mission General Hospital in Imo state, south-eastern Nigeria


1 Department of Family Medicine, Federal Medical Centre, Umuahia, Abia State, Nigeria and visiting Consultant Family Physician, St. Vincent De Paul Hospital, Amurie- Omanze, Nigeria
2 Department of Public Health Technology, Federal University of Technology, Amurie- Omanze, Isu LGA, Imo State, Nigeria
3 Owerri, St. Vincent De Paul Hospital, Amurie- Omanze, Isu LGA, Imo State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
GUP Iloh
Department of Family Medicine, Federal Medical Centre, Umuahia, Abia State
Nigeria
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/1119-3077.84019

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Objectives: This study was generally aimed at determining the prevalence and pattern of obesity using body mass index (BMI) criterion and specifically screening for its common primary co-morbidities among adult Nigerians attending a rural Mission General Hospital in Imo state, South-Eastern Nigeria. Materials and Methods: A descriptive study was carried out from June 2008 to May 2009. A total of 2156 consecutive new adult patients aged 18-90 years were screened for obesity using the BMI criterion, and 129 patients had BMI ≥30 kg/m 2 and met the inclusion criteria. The data collected included age, sex, marital status, education, occupation, social class, weight, height and blood pressure, fasting blood sugar and lipid profile. Results: The prevalence of obesity was 6.0%, with class I obesity (86.1%) being the most common pattern. Hypertension (16.3%) was the most common primary co-morbidity; others included low high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (21.7%), high low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (9.3%), high total cholesterol (7.8%), high triglyceridemia (4.7%) and diabetes mellitus (3.9%). Conclusions: This study has shown that obesity and its primary co-morbidities are emerging as a serious health problem among the study population, with class I obesity being the most common pattern and hypertension being the most common primary co-morbidity. Anthropometric determination of obesity and screening for its common primary co-morbidities should be integrated as part of the clinic baseline assessment of adult Nigerians attending rural hospitals to facilitate their early detection and institutionalization of appropriate preventive and therapeutic measures.


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