Metabolic syndrome (MS) is a composite of risk factors for cardiovascular disease including dyslipidaemia, insulin resistance, hypertension and usually associated with obesity. Initially MS was considered a condition of adults but is now recognised as having a prevalence of approximately 3.3% in children. The clinical relevance of MS in children is currently unknown but the morbidity associated with childhood obesity is well-recognised. This review describes the epidemiology of childhood MS, the underlying risk factors, possible developmental mechanisms and gives an overview of the current management of obesity in children.
Bibliographical noteThe authors would like to thank Dr Craig Oxley for his contributions to this review.
- Fetal development
- Longitudinal studies
- Metabolic syndrome