Reference Curves of Waist Circumference in Children and Adolescents

  • Peter SchwandtEmail author
  • Gerda-Maria Haas


The global increase of adiposity in youth necessitates early diagnosis and intervention. Among other anthropometric measures waist circumference assessment has become increasingly important as an easy, non-invasive and inexpensive routine tool since waist circumference is a measure of central adiposity. The waist circumference is essential for a correct definition of abdominal obesity and consequently for a common definition of the metabolic syndrome in childhood and adolescence in order to allow for considerable ethnic variations. Furthermore, central obesity and therefore the waist circumference are predictive for cardiovascular risk. To compensate for gender- and age-specific variations in development and ethnic origin of children and adolescents percentiles rather than absolute values are used for comparison with adults. This contribution paper has taken over the task of collating equivalent world-wide data as far as they have been published until now (October 2009, PubMed). However, the authors apologize in advance for having possibly missed some important publications.


Obesity Crest 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Body mass index


Computed tomography


Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry




Smooth (L) curve, trends observed for the mean (M), an coefficient of variation (S)




Magnetic resonance imaging


Prevention Education Program


Waist circumference


World Health Organization


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Arteriosklerose Praeventions InstitutMunichGermany

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