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Injury Risk Higher In Overweight Adults

Armen Hareyan's picture

Obesity and Injury Risk

Overweight and obese adults are significantly more likely to sustain injuries that require medical treatment than their normal-weight peers.

For the extremely obese, the risk is nearly twice as high.

"Our results suggest that injury rates could increase in the future as obesity rates continue to increase," said study co-author Justin Trogdon, Ph.D., a research economist at RTI International in Research Triangle Park, N.C.,

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The study appears in the May/June issue of the American Journal of Health Promotion.

Trogdon and colleagues analyzed data from a large survey of medical expenditures administered by the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

The 42,304 adults who participated noted all medical conditions, injuries and health care expenditures that occurred between 1999 and 2002. They also reported height and weight, which researchers used to calculate body mass index.

Researchers found that as BMI increased, so did a person's risk of sustaining an injury requiring medical treatment.

Overweight adults (BMI between 26 and 29) had a 15 percent increased risk of injury compared to normal-weight adults. Morbidly obese adults (BMI of 40 and over) had the highest risk of injury