Patterns of body fat deposition in youth and their relation to left ventricular markers of adverse cardiovascular prognosis

George A. Mensah, Frank A. Treiber, Gaston K. Kapuku, Harry Davis, Vernon A. Barnes, William B. Strong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


The patterns of body fat deposition in healthy youth and their relation to future development of cardiovascular disease remain incompletely understood. To further evaluate these patterns, we measured indirect indexes of central and general fat deposition in healthy adolescents (mean age 15.4 ± 2.3 years) with family histories of hypertension. We examined the relation between these indexes and echocardiographic markers of adverse prognosis as well as the effect of gender and ethnicity. All 225 subjects (64% black and 48% female) had ≥1 biologic parent and 1 grandparent with hypertension. Skinfold thicknesses, waist-to-hip girth ratio, Quetelet index, Ponderal index, conicity, and Z score weight - Z score height were measured. Left ventricular (LV) mass, indexed LV mass, relative wall thickness (RWT), and midwall fractional shortening (MFS) were determined using echocardiography. In both black and white subjects, the adiposity indexes were significantly correlated with posterior wall thickness, total LV mass, and indexed LV mass (p <0.05 for all). Additionally, in black subjects, central adiposity was inversely related to MFS and directly related to RWT and septal thickness. General adiposity independently predicted indexed and nonindexed LV mass, whereas central adiposity predicted MFS and RWT. Compared with subjects with normal LV geometry, those with abnormal geometry were heavier and fatter based on every index of obesity (p <0.03 for all). Thus, indexes of fat deposition are significantly correlated with LV markers of adverse prognosis in healthy youth. Copyright (C) 1999 Excerpta Medica Inc.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)583-588
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Cardiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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