Background & aims: Children affected by Down syndrome (DS) have a higher prevalence of obesity, dyslipidemia, and altered liver enzymes. This study investigates a small sample of pediatric patients with DS and possible associations among their anthropometric and laboratory data. Methods: Cross-sectional study involving 33 children (5-17 years old) affected by DS. Children underwent the measurement of anthropometric parameters through bioelectrical impedance analysis and a venous sampling to check their hepatic and lipid profiles. Results: 54.6% of subjects were overweight or obese according to WHO (BMI z-score ≥1) and 42% of subjects were overweight or obese according to McCarthy et al. with a percentage of body fat (PBF) ≥ 85° centiles. 28% of subjects were dyslipidemic, showing an alteration of total, LDL, HDL cholesterol or triglycerides according to our laboratory reference values, and a low HDL value (under the normal range for gender and age) was the most frequent lipidic alteration (12.5%). An association was found between some values: lower HDL value was associated with higher PBF (p = 0.025); higher ALT value was associated with higher BMI z-score (p = 0.01) and higher PBF (p = 0.01); higher GGT value was associated with higher BMI z-score (p = 0.002) and higher PBF (p = 0.002). Conclusions: Children with DS are at high risk for obesity and its complications. Our results show dyslipidemia and altered liver enzymes in obese subjects. Pediatricians should monitor children with DS for obesity and consider liver function testing and lipid profiles on children with DS and obesity.
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