Journal Article


Catherine M. Phillips
Jan Van den Broeck
Ivan J Perry
Seán R Millar


Physiotherapy & Sport

waist circumference body mass index world health organisation cardiovascular risk fat distribution logistic regression to height ratio middle aged american heart association consensus statement anthropometric indicators blood pressure insulin resistance metabolic syndrome risk measurement

Optimal central obesity measurement site for assessing cardiometabolic and type 2 diabetes risk in middle-aged adults. (2015)

Abstract Despite recommendations that central obesity assessment should be employed as a marker of cardiometabolic health, no consensus exists regarding measurement protocol. This study examined a range of anthropometric variables and their relationships with cardiometabolic features and type 2 diabetes in order to ascertain whether measurement site influences discriminatory accuracy. In particular, we compared waist circumference (WC) measured at two sites: (1) immediately below the lowest rib (WC rib) and (2) between the lowest rib and iliac crest (WC midway), which has been recommended by the World Health Organisation and International Diabetes Federation. This was a cross-sectional study involving a random sample of 2,002 men and women aged 46-73 years. Metabolic profiles and WC, hip circumference, pelvic width and body mass index (BMI) were determined. Correlation, logistic regression and area under the receiver operating characteristic curve analyses were used to evaluate obesity measurement relationships with metabolic risk phenotypes and type 2 diabetes. WC rib measures displayed the strongest associations with non-optimal lipid and lipoprotein levels, high blood pressure, insulin resistance, impaired fasting glucose, a clustering of metabolic risk features and type 2 diabetes, in both genders. Rib-derived indices improved discrimination of type 2 diabetes by 3-7% compared to BMI and 2-6% compared to WC midway (in men) and 5-7% compared to BMI and 4-6% compared to WC midway (in women). A prediction model including BMI and central obesity displayed a significantly higher area under the curve for WC rib (0.78, P=0.003), Rib/height ratio (0.80, P<0.001), Rib/pelvis ratio (0.79, P<0.001), but not for WC midway (0.75, P=0.127), when compared to one with BMI alone (0.74). WC rib is easier to assess and our data suggest that it is a better method for determining obesity-related cardiometabolic risk than WC midway. The clinical utility of rib-derived indices, or alternative WC measurements, deserves further investigation.
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Full list of authors on original publication

Catherine M. Phillips, Jan Van den Broeck, Ivan J Perry, Seán R Millar

Experts in our system

Catherine M Phillips
University College Cork
Total Publications: 44
Jan Van den Broeck
University College Cork
Total Publications: 3
Ivan J Perry
University College Cork
Total Publications: 188
Seán R Millar
University College Cork