Overweight and eating disorders in primary care: a sentinella reporting in 2-20 years old patients

TitleOverweight and eating disorders in primary care: a sentinella reporting in 2-20 years old patients
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsCornaz, S, Surís, J-C, Santos-Eggimann, B, Group, SSentinel W
Conference NameAnnual Joint Meeting of the Swiss Societies for Paediatrics, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Paediatric Surgery
Conference LocationLugano, June 19-21, 2008
ISBN Number1424-7860
Accession Numberserval:BIB_9CBC00052B2C
KeywordsAdolescent, Child, Counseling, Eating Disorders, Family, Family Practice, Infant, Overweight, Physicians, Primary Health Care, Switzerland

Aims: To describe overweight or eating disorders in primary care consultations of Swiss children or adolescents and analyze responses by physicians.
Methods: 150 to 200 primary care physicians participating in the Swiss Sentinel Surveillance Network in collaboration with the Swiss Federal Office of Public Health register their consultations over one year for selected health conditions. We describe reports of consultations where overweight or eating disorders were identified in subjects aged 2-20 years by physicians, patients or their relatives, or referring professionals, between 29.12.2007 and 15.2.2008.
Results: 189 consultations were registered in the first 7 weeks of declaration. A short majority concerned female (58%) and 12-20 years old (53%) patients. Half were reported by pediatricians, one third by general practitioners and the remaining minority by internists. The sample included two thirds of Swiss-German and one third of Swiss-French cases. In the male subgroup aged 2-20 and in female children aged 2-11, almost all reported consultations were characterized by overweight. Among female teenagers, underweight was reported in 29% whilst overweight was recorded in 60%. Anorexia was noted in 68% of reported consultations of underweight female teenagers. In underweight patients, advice given by physicians frequently covered both nutrition and physical activity (38%) or nutrition only (29%), while no specific recommendations were recorded for the remaining third. In case of overweight, for one half of consultations patients received both nutritional and physical activity recommendations, for 12% nutritional only, and for one quarter patients were not advised in these domains. No specific treatment was usually proposed to overweight patients (65%), except when bulimia was diagnosed; in such case, one third of patients were proposed a psychological/psychiatric treatment, whereas both psychological and pharmacological treatments were frequently offered for underweight teenagers. Therapy was most often motivated by physicians (50%) or by relatives (44%), more rarely by patients themselves (7%).
Conclusions: These preliminary data indicate that in some primary care consultations of young patients with overweight or eating disorders, advice was not given on nutrition and physical activity. This observation needs to be later confirmed with the totality of the consultations registered in 2008 and reasons will be further investigated.



Citation Key / SERVAL ID5035


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