Senior Honors Projects, 2010-current

Date of Award

Fall 2014

Document Type

Dissertation/Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)

Department

Department of Nursing

Advisor(s)

Karen Jagiello

Julie Strunk

Abstract

In 2007, the CDC reported approximately 12.5 million children and adolescents in the U.S. were obese. Among 24-month old clinically obese children, only 23% were diagnosed as obese. The most concerning is the prevalence of obesity in 6-month olds; 16% of 6-month old infants in the U.S. are obese, of which only 14% are diagnosed as being obese. Previous research concentrates on the factors that influence infant obesity, but does not address the prevalence of diagnosing obesity in children, particularly those under two years of age. The purpose of this project was to pioneer a survey exploring the prevalence of diagnosing obesity in children less than two years of age, and to gain an understanding of why obesity is, or is not, being diagnosed in this population in the Commonwealth Virginia. Using an anonymous Qualtric survey, a mix of demographic, quantitative, and qualitative questions were asked of healthcare providers who practice pediatrics in Virginia. All practitioners agreed that they have seen obesity in patients less than two years of age, but most providers do not make clinical decisions about obesity until after the child is two years old. This descriptive, mixed-methods study demonstrated that providers are waiting until children are older than two years of age to make a diagnosis of obesity.

Included in

Diagnosis Commons

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