Growth Centiles of Pacific Children Living in Auckland, New Zealand
Rush, E; Obolonkin, V; Savila, F
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Background: Since 2000, the longitudinal Pacific Island Families study has measured the weight, height and body mass index (BMI) of 582 girls and 643 boys at 2, 4, 6 and 9 year data collection phases. Aim: To extend and record the age-related distribution of weight, height and BMI measures in Pacific children aged 2-10 years and to compare the distribution to population and clinical growth charts. Methods: Gender-specific age-related centile curves were derived using the LMS method for weight, height and BMI. The 50th centiles from the World Health Organisation growth reference for 2-5 year olds and the Centres for Disease Control (CDC) for 5-10 year olds were compared. Overweight and obesity were defined by the CDC BMI 85th and 95th centiles. Results: The proportion of children whose weight and height were above the reference 50th centile increased with age. At age 10, using CDC criteria, more than 50% of the children were classified as obese and 70% were overweight. Conclusions: These charts support the need to prioritize interventions for Pacific families to address childhood obesity. These centile curves could help assess the relative growth of Pacific children and identify children for further assessment and treatment.