Interventions for treating obesity in children

Interventions for treating obesity in children

Child and adolescent obesity is increasingly prevalent, and can be associated with significant short- and long-term health consequences. This study aims to assess the efficacy of lifestyle, drug and surgical interventions for treating obesity in childhood.

The authors found that, while there is limited quality data to recommend one treatment program to be favoured over another, this review shows that combined behavioural lifestyle interventions compared to standard care or self-help can produce a significant and clinically meaningful reduction in overweight in children and adolescents. In obese adolescents, consideration should be given to the use of either orlistat or sibutramine, as an adjunct to lifestyle interventions, although this approach needs to be carefully weighed up against the potential for adverse effects. Furthermore, high quality research that considers psychosocial determinants for behaviour change, strategies to improve clinician-family interaction, and cost-effective programs for primary and community care is required.

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