The number of children hospitalized in the United States for health problems linked to obesity tripled from 1998 to 2004, according to a study presented here Wednesday.
The most frequent problems were sleep apnea, high blood pressure and gall bladder stones, the conference organized by the Obesity Society was told.
“In 2002 for the first time ever, there have been more admissions for obesity than for malnutrion,” said John Morton, a professor of medicine at Standford University.
In 1998, 40 out of every 10,000 children under 18 were hospitalized for ailments linked to obesity compared to 120 cases per 10,000 children in 2004, he said.
The most biggest (sic) increase was among children affected by sleep apnea. The rate of their hospitalization increased from about 20 cases per 10,000 to 270 per 10,000 in 2004.
High blood pressure was responsible for 100 hospitalizations per 10,000 children, or twice the rate six years earlier, while hospitalization rates for gall bladder problems reached 35 per 10,000 up from 20 in 1998.
Meanwhile, the number of gastric bypass surgeries, which involves stapling part of the stomach in a last-ditch bid to loose weight, shot up from 500 among people under 18 in 1998 to 4,000 in 2004, Morton said.
This is absolutely insane. The people to blame are not fast-food restaurants, school cafeterias, grocery stores nor the government. The blame lies with the parents who have no idea how to raise children. They should be ashamed of themselves.