Overweight Child: Medical Evaluation - Topic Overview
If your child has been diagnosed by a doctor as being
overweight or at risk of becoming overweight, a
thorough medical exam is important to identify and treat any related health
Your doctor will ask
- Your child's weight history, to see if your
child has had an unusual change in rate of growth.
- What may have
started the weight gain (such as an illness, family crisis or change, or
- A family history of
type 2 diabetes, heart disease,
high blood pressure, and
- Sleeping problems your child
may have, such as
sleep apnea, which means your child stops breathing at
times while asleep.
- When you noticed your child's weight
- Past efforts to manage weight.
- Unhealthy eating
behavior, such as binge eating or fasting.
- Your child's diet and
Causes of overweight
Your doctor will look for
physical or emotional reasons for your child's weight gain, including
Cushing's syndrome (all of which are rare), or
emotional causes such as
Some or all of the
following tests will be done to help identify the cause and complications of
Your doctor will also ask if your child is taking
medicines that may result in weight gain, including:
- Antidepressants, such as amitriptyline, desipramine
(Norpramin), and imipramine
- Corticosteroids, such as cortisone (Cortone),
hydrocortisone (Cortef), and prednisone.
- Medicines used to
seizures, such as divalproex (Depakote) and gabapentin