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Body composition of moderate and severe obese pregnant women attending a weight management clinic
  1. J Balani1,
  2. H Shehata1,2,
  3. S Hyer1
  1. 1Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust, Surrey, UK
  2. 2St George's Medical School, London, UK


Aim To assess body composition in non-diabetic obese women attending a weight management clinic.

Methods The authors assessed 25 consecutive non-diabetic pregnant women (median age 32 years (26–36 years), median gestational age 16 weeks (14–19 weeks)) at their first visit to a multi-disciplinary weight management clinic. Body composition was assessed by InBody 720 composition analysis using bioimpedance technique.

Results The median body mass index for all women was 42.1 kg/m2 (38.5–44.1). The median percentage body fat was elevated in all patients (50.8% (50.2–53%)); ref range <28%; Median waist hip ratio was increased (1.01 (0.99–1.1); ref range <0.9) as well as visceral fat area (212.8 cm2 (200–250 cm2), ref range <100 cm2). Fat mass was increased in the trunk and in all limbs. When regional muscle mass was assessed, soft lean mass in the lower limbs was reduced in all women (92% (86.5–94.6%), ref range ≥100%) but was in the normal range in the arms. Protein and mineral composition was in the reference range in all women.

Conclusion Moderate and severely obese women have reduced muscle mass in their lower limbs which reflects low physical activity. Their increased visceral fat will predispose them to diabetes and pre-eclampsia. Further studies are in progress to correlate maternal body composition and pregnancy outcomes.

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