Past Issues

The Prevalence and Characteristics of Obesity among Inpatients with Schizophrenia in Taiwan

Meng-Huan Wu, Han-Yi Ching, Shang-Liang Wu, Chieh-Hsing Chang, Chung-Ying Chen, Ta-Jen Chang

Objectives: This study was intended to investigate the prevalence and characteristics
of obesity and abdominal obesity among inpatients with schizophrenia,
and to compare with outpatients and persons in the general population. Methods:
We recruited 710 inpatients with schizophrenia from chronic wards in a mental
hospital in Taiwan in March 2010. Obesity and abdominal obesity were defi ned as
the body mass index (BMI) ≥ 27 as well as waist circumference > 90 cm in male,
and > 80 cm in female patients, respectively, by the defi nition set by the Department
of Health, Executive Yuan, Taiwan 2002. Results: We analyzed demographic
characteristics of 710 participants, including 426 male (60%) and 284 female
(40%) patients. The mean age was 47.6 ± 9.5 years and the mean age of onset of
the disease was 32.7 ± 10 years. The average length of illness was 14.9 ± 6.8 years,
while the mean length of hospitalization was 4.6 ± 2.9 years. The overall prevalence
of obesity was 16.4%, with 14.3% in male and 19.7% in female patients, respectively.
The overall prevalence of abdominal obesity was 53.8%, with 39.7% in
male and 75% in female patients. Conclusion: The prevalence of abdominal obesity
among schizophrenic inpatients was higher than that among persons in the
general population. Female inpatients had 2.2-fold higher prevalence of abdominal
obesity than persons in the general population. Therefore, we suggested that active
prevention and intervention for abdominal obesity among inpatients with schizophrenia
on chronic wards in Taiwan are needed.
Key Word prevalence, obesity, inpatients, schizophrenia
Editorial Committe, Taiwanese Journal of Psychiatry
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