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Ann Pediatr Endocrinol Metab. 2016 Jun;21(2):75-80. English. Original Article.
Jung JH , Jung MK , Kim KE , Kwon AR , Chae HW , Yoon CS , Kim HS , Kim DH .
Department of Pediatrics, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Department of Radiology, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Sowha Children's Hospital, Seoul, Korea.

PURPOSE: Abdominal obesity is a fundamental factor underlying the development of metabolic syndrome. Because of radiation exposure and cost, computed tomography or dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry to evaluate abdominal adiposity are not appropriate in children. Authors evaluated whether ultrasound results could be an indicator of insulin resistance and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). METHODS: We enrolled 73 subjects (aged 6-16 years) who were evaluated abdominal adiposity by ultrasound. Subcutaneous fat thickness was defined as the measurement from the skin-fat interface to the linea alba, and visceral fat thickness (VFT) was defined as the thickness from the linea alba to the aorta. Anthropometric and biochemical metabolic parameters were also collected and compared. The subjects who met 2 criteria, radiologic confirmed fatty liver and alanine aminotransferase >40, were diagnosed with NAFLD. RESULTS: There was a strong positive correlation between VFT and obesity. VFT was highly correlated with the homeostasis model assessment for insulin resistance score (r=0.403, P<0.001). The area under the curve for VFT as a predictor of NAFLD was 0.875 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.787-0.964). VFT of 34.3 mm was found to be the discriminating cutoff for NAFLD (sensitivity, 84.6%; specificity, 71.2%, respectively). CONCLUSION: Ultrasound could be useful in measuring VFT and assessing abdominal adiposity in children. Moreover, increased VFT might be an appropriate prognostic factor for insulin resistance and NAFLD.

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