Quantitative prediction of body diameter in severely obese individuals

Kevin R. Fontaine, Gary Gadbury, Steven B. Heymsfield, John Kral, Jeanine B. Albu, David Allison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


The prevalence of obesity and severe obesity continues to increase in the developed world. Apart from obesity's strong association with a variety of health conditions, severely obese individuals (i.e. ≥300 lb [136 kg]) sometimes have difficulty with ambulation, and often cannot use regular sized clothes, furniture, and assistive devices such as walkers and wheelchairs. The purpose of this study was to assess the relationship between linear body measurements (anthropometry) and weight in severely obese people in order to generate equations to predict such measurements from weight alone. Various body size measurements were obtained from three independent data sets (74 severely obese individuals evaluated at the New York Obesity Research Center, 103 severely obese individuals who participated in the National Center for Health Statistics' National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey III, and a further 90 severely obese individuals evaluated at the New York Obesity Research Center). Linear regression analyses revealed that for each increase of 10 kg (22.04 lb) above 136 kg (300 lb), body diameter measurements increase by 0.9-1.1 cm. These analyses provide body size-to-weight estimates that may help manufacturers develop products and services that are more appropriate for increasing numbers of severely obese individuals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-60
Number of pages12
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 15 2002


  • Body diameter
  • Mobility
  • Obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Psychology(all)
  • Applied Psychology


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