Psychosocial bias in the diagnosis of obesity.

Peter Franks, L. Culpepper, J. Dickinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study explores demographic and psychosocial variables associated with the assignment of the diagnosis of obesity in a family medicine residency model practice. Three groups of adult patients seen during 1978 were studied: a random sample of active patients, patients diagnosed as obese during 1978, and those never diagnosed as obese. While the prevalence of true obesity (greater than 20 percent above ideal body weight) was similar for men (58 percent) and women (47 percent), more women were diagnosed (222 women vs 87 men) and were more likely to be diagnosed within a year of entering the practice (42 percent women vs 10 percent men). Diagnosed obese women were older, had more psychological problems, and visited the practice more often than nonobese women. Diagnosed obese men were older, more frequently had psychological problems, visited the practice more often, and were more likely to be married than nonobese men. Undiagnosed obese men, however, had fewer psychological problems than nonobese men. The results suggest that physician education should address problems with diagnostic labeling and that researchers should anticipate subtle selection biases in retrospective studies when sampling methods depend on diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)745-750
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Family Practice
Volume14
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1982
Externally publishedYes

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Obesity
Psychology
Ideal Body Weight
Selection Bias
Internship and Residency
Retrospective Studies
Research Personnel
Medicine
Demography
Physicians
Education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this

Franks, P., Culpepper, L., & Dickinson, J. (1982). Psychosocial bias in the diagnosis of obesity. Journal of Family Practice, 14(4), 745-750.

Psychosocial bias in the diagnosis of obesity. / Franks, Peter; Culpepper, L.; Dickinson, J.

In: Journal of Family Practice, Vol. 14, No. 4, 04.1982, p. 745-750.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Franks, P, Culpepper, L & Dickinson, J 1982, 'Psychosocial bias in the diagnosis of obesity.', Journal of Family Practice, vol. 14, no. 4, pp. 745-750.
Franks P, Culpepper L, Dickinson J. Psychosocial bias in the diagnosis of obesity. Journal of Family Practice. 1982 Apr;14(4):745-750.
Franks, Peter ; Culpepper, L. ; Dickinson, J. / Psychosocial bias in the diagnosis of obesity. In: Journal of Family Practice. 1982 ; Vol. 14, No. 4. pp. 745-750.
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