When children are referred to health services for weight management, body mass index (BMI) percentiles are most often used to determine program eligibility. However, the BMI is limited because it fails to reflect the varied health issues, concerns, and outcomes of individuals.
In response, researchers have developed more comprehensive systems to determine health risks in individuals with obesity, using criteria that go beyond BMI to quantify health according to physical, psychosocial, and metabolic domains. For example, the Edmonton Obesity Staging System (EOSS) was originally proposed by Dr. Arya Sharma in 2009, which was then validated using a couple different data sets (see here and here).
Since children are not little adults, the original, adult-based EOSS didn’t translate directly to pediatrics. This limitation led a group of us, including Drs. Mary Jetha and Laurie Gaboury from the Pediatric Centre for Weight and Health at the Stollery Children’s Hospital, to propose a pediatric version – the Edmonton Obesity Staging System for Pediatrics (EOSS-P). Led by our colleague Dr. Stasia Hadjiannakis (Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario Research Institute in Ottawa), we were pleased to learn today that our EOSS-P paper was accepted by Paediatrics & Child Health. Will follow-up in the coming months when the paper goes to print.
The next step will be to validate the EOSS-P, and this research is already underway, which is also being led by Stasia and her team.