Medical College of Wisconsin
CTSICores SearchResearch InformaticsREDCap

Pain as a Comorbidity of Pediatric Obesity. Infant Child Adolesc Nutr 2012 Oct 01;4(5):315-320



Pubmed ID


Pubmed Central ID





The purpose of this study was to document the prevalence and characteristics of physical pain in a sample of severely obese children and adolescents. In this retrospective chart review, primary measures included current and past pain, pain intensity, and pain characteristics during a 5-minute walk test. Pain assessments for 74 patients (mean age 11.7 years; 53% female; 41% African American) were conducted by a physical therapist. Past pain was reported by 73% of the sample, with 47% reporting pain on the day of program enrollment. Although average pain intensity was moderate (M = 5.5/10), alarmingly, 42% of those with current pain reported severe pain (6/10 to 10/10). Overall, pain occurred primarily in the lower extremities and with physical activity. Patients reporting current pain had a significantly higher body mass index than those reporting no pain. These findings suggest that pain is common in severely obese youth, and furthermore, that pain should be recognized as a comorbidity of pediatric obesity. Routinely screening severely obese children and adolescents for pain presence and intensity is recommended.

Author List

Hainsworth KR, Miller LA, Stolzman SC, Fidlin BM, Davies WH, Weisman SJ, Skelton JA


W. Hobart Davies Professor & Chair in the Phychology department at University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
Keri Hainsworth PhD Associate Professor in the Anesthesiology department at Medical College of Wisconsin
Steven J. Weisman MD Professor in the Anesthesiology department at Medical College of Wisconsin

jenkins-FCD Prod-484 8aa07fc50b7f6d102f3dda2f4c7056ff84294d1d