Edmonton Obesity Stage in Italian Workers

Luisella Vigna and Arya Sharma

Luisella Vigna and Arya Sharma

Amongst the many posters being presented at the 3rd International Congress on Abdominal Obesity this week, one that (for obvious reasons) caught my attention is a study by Vigna and colleagues from the Occupational Medicine Unit, Fondazione IRCCS Ca’ Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, University of Milan, which looked at the Edmonton Obesity Staging System (EOSS) in a group of 134 overweight and obese workers (BMI greater than 25).

Surprisingly, the vast majority of participants (76%) had Stage 2 obesity, with only 7% and 9% having Stage 0 and 1, respectively.

This relatively high burden of comorbidities and complications was reflected in the fact that 81% had mental health problems, 66% had ‘mechanical’ complications, and well over 90% had metabolic risk factors or comorbidities.

Over 38% of participants reported a direct impact of their personal health on their work performance.

Given that there was a rather poor relationship between BMI levels and the actual presence or impact of comorbidities, the authors conclude that assessment of obesity stage rather than simply BMI may give a better idea of the ‘occupational’ health of individuals with excess weight, particularly in the assessment for specific professional activities for which mental, mechanical or metabolic health may be of particular importance rather than just a measure of size.

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