Increased left atrial size in obese children and its association with insulin resistance: a pilot study
BACKGROUND AND AIMS Excess childhood weight is associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD) in adulthood. Whether this is mediated through adult body mass index (BMI) and associated risk factors such as metabolic derangements remains unclear. The aim was to examine whether childhood BMI velocity (Δkg m(-2) per year) was associated with adult CVD mortality and to examine how adult BMI and cardiometabolic risk factors contribute to the association. METHODS AND RESULTS Subjects were 1924 Icelanders born between 1921 and 1935 and living in Reykjavik when recruited into a longitudinal study from 1967 to 1991. From ages 8-13 years, BMI velocity was calculated to quantify the association between childhood growth and adult CVD mortality. Deaths from recruitment to 31 December 2009 were extracted from the national register. There were 202 CVD deaths among men and 90 CVD deaths among women (mean follow-up: 25.9 years). Faster BMI velocity from ages 8-13 years was associated with CVD mortality when comparing those in the highest versus lowest tertile with corresponding hazard ratio (HR) (95% confidence interval (CI)): 1.49 (1.03, 2.15) among men and 2.32 (1.32, 4.08) among women after adjustment for mid-life BMI and CVD risk factors. Faster childhood BMI velocity was associated with elevated CVD risk factors among men at mid-life but these associations were less pronounced among women. CONCLUSION Faster increase in BMI from ages 8-13 years was associated with an increased CVD mortality risk. Children with early growth spurts coupled with excess weight gain during this transition period from childhood into adolescence should be closely monitored to ensure better health in adulthood.