Annals of Behavioral Medicine

, Volume 45, Issue 2, pp 239–248

Accuracy of Weight Perception Among Urban Early Adolescents with Uncontrolled Asthma and Their Caregivers

  • Melanie Jay
  • Cesalie Stepney
  • N. Ari Wijetunga
  • Grace Akinrinade
  • Karen Dorsey
  • Jean-Marie Bruzzese
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s12160-012-9452-8

Cite this article as:
Jay, M., Stepney, C., Wijetunga, N.A. et al. ann. behav. med. (2013) 45: 239. doi:10.1007/s12160-012-9452-8



Obesity is associated with poor asthma outcomes; weight loss improves such outcomes. Inaccurate recognition of obesity may impede weight control.


We examined perception of weight by early adolescents with uncontrolled asthma and their caregivers, and tested the relationship between medical visit frequency and accuracy of perceived weight status.


A total of 373 adolescents and their caregivers reported the adolescent’s height/weight and weight perception; caregivers reported healthcare utilization. We measured height/weight. Logistic regression modeled accuracy of weight perception.


A total of 43.7 % of the overweight/obese adolescents and caregivers accurately perceived weight status. BMI percentile [odds ratio (OR) = 1.19, confidence interval (CI) = 1.10–1.28] and total medical visits (OR = 1.18, CI = 1.05–1.33) were associated with higher accuracy in caregivers. Total medical visits (OR = 0.84, CI = 0.74–0.96) was associated with lower accuracy in adolescents.


Accurate perception of weight status was poor for overweight adolescents with uncontrolled asthma and their caregivers. Frequent medical visits were associated with improved caregivers’ but not adolescents’ perceptions.


Asthma Obesity Perception Ethnic minority Inner city Early adolescents 

Copyright information

© The Society of Behavioral Medicine 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Melanie Jay
    • 1
  • Cesalie Stepney
    • 2
  • N. Ari Wijetunga
    • 3
  • Grace Akinrinade
    • 4
  • Karen Dorsey
    • 5
  • Jean-Marie Bruzzese
    • 6
  1. 1.VA New York Harbor and Division of General Internal MedicineNYU School of MedicineNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyRutgers UniversityPiscatawayUSA
  3. 3.Albert Einstein College of MedicineYeshiva UniversityBronxUSA
  4. 4.Department of Child and Adolescent PsychiatryNYU School of MedicineNew YorkUSA
  5. 5.Department of PediatricsYale University, School of MedicineNew HavenUSA
  6. 6.Department of Child and Adolescent PsychiatryChild Study Center, NYU School of MedicineNew YorkUSA

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