Wrist Circumference Is a Clinical Marker of Insulin Resistance in Overweight and Obese Children and Adolescents
Background—Excess fat is one of the main determinants of insulin resistance, representing the metabolic basis for developing future cardiovascular disease. The aim of the current study was to find an easy-to-detect clinical marker of insulin resistance which can be used to identify young subjects at increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
Methods and Results—Four-hundred and seventy-seven overweight/obese children and adolescents (mean age 10.31±2.80 years) were consecutively enrolled. Standard deviation score body mass index, fasting biochemical parameters, and homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance were evaluated. Statistical differences were investigated using multiple linear regression analysis. Manual measure of wrist circumference was evaluated in all children and adolescents. Fifty-one subjects, randomly selected, underwent nuclear magnetic resonance imaging of the wrist to evaluate transversal wrist area at the Lister tubercle level. A statistically significant association was found between manual measure of wrist circumference and insulin levels or homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (β=0.34 and 0.35, respectively; P<10−5 for both comparisons). These associations were more significant than those between SD score body mass index and insulin levels or homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (β=0.12 and 0.10, respectively; P≤0.02 for both comparisons). Nuclear magnetic resonance imaging acquisition clarified that the association between wrist circumference and insulin levels or homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance reflected the association with bone tissue-related areas (P≤0.01 for both) but not with the adipose tissue ones (P>0.05), explaining 20% and 17% of the variances of the 2 parameters.
Conclusions—Our findings suggest a close relationship among wrist circumference, its bone component, and insulin resistance in overweight/obese children and adolescents, opening new perspectives in the prediction of cardiovascular disease.
- Received July 7, 2010.
- Accepted February 22, 2011.
- © 2011 American Heart Association, Inc.