The Question: Does Cesarean birth increase the risk of later obesity in the child?

The Study: In this study from Children’s Hospital Boston doctors followed more than 1,250 children born between 1999 and 2002. The children were evaluated for obesity at age three years.

The Results: Twenty three percent of the children (284) were born by Cesarean delivery. At age 3, 16% of the children born by Cesarean were obese compared to only 8% of the children born vaginally. No other differences between the groups were found.

Comment: Cesarean delivery may be a risk factor for later obesity. However, there may be other factors that lead to both an increased risk of Cesarean delivery and obesity at age three. As we have said many times, correlationl doesn’t mean causation.

Read More: Archives of Disease in Childhood, 07/12

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From issue: 28/01-02