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Journal of Obesity
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 206074, 8 pages
Clinical Study

Obesity and Preference-Weighted Quality of Life of Ethnically Diverse Middle School Children: The HEALTHY Study

1Social and Health Research Center, 1302 South Saint Mary's Street, San Antonio, TX 78210, USA
2Biostatistics Center, The George Washington University, 6110 Executive Boulevard, Suite 750, Rockville, MD 20852, USA

Received 11 January 2013; Accepted 17 May 2013

Academic Editor: Jennifer A. O'Dea

Copyright © 2013 R. P. Treviño et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


To date, studies examining the relation between body mass index percentile (BMI%) categories and health-related quality of life (QOL) measurements have not reported preference-weighted scores among ethnically diverse children. We report the associations between BMI% categories and preference-weighted scores among a large cohort of ethnically diverse sixth grade children who participated in the HEALTHY school-based type 2 diabetes risk factor prevention study. Health Utility Index 2 (HUI2) and Health Utility Index 3 (HUI3) and the feeling thermometer (FT) were the preference-weighted QOL instruments used to measure student’s preference scores. Of 6358 consented students, 4979 (78.3%) had complete QOL, height, weight, and covariate data. Mean (SD) preference scores were 0.846 (0.160), 0.796 (0.237), and 0.806 (0.161) for the HUI2, HUI3, and FT, respectively. After adjusting for age, sex, blood glucose and insulin, Tanner stage, race/ethnicity, family history of diabetes, and educational attainment, children with severe obesity (>99%) had significantly lower preference scores compared to normal weight on all three instruments (HUI2 ; HUI3 ; and FT ). Obese and severe obese categories were significantly associated with lower HUI2 functional ratings in the mobility domain and with lower HUI3 functional ratings in the speech domain.