The Helen DeVos Children's Hospital Healthy Weight Center is a comprehensive center dedicated to children and adolescents with a family-centered focus.
We provide Stage 3/4 care by an interdisciplinary team which treats childhood obesity and plans to provide outcomes that are well documented and among the best in the nation.
Best practice treatment with outcomes-based clinical research will help encourage patients to maintain lifestyle behavior change. We will also learn from our patients so that we may lead the discovery of new information vital to reversing the epidemic of childhood obesity.
All patients and a parent/or guardian are asked to attend two initial assessment visits that will include: physician examination, body composition testing, lab work, nutrition assessment, physiological assessment, social work assessment and physical activity assessment. Specific testing includes:
- Measurement of weight and height
- Assessment of family history and obesity related co-morbidities
- Complete physical exam
- Blood pressure
- Laboratory blood profile
- Genetic testing (in future)
- Assessment of percent body fat and waist circumference
- Determination of need for subspecialty referrals
- Dietary intake and nutritional assessment by a registered dietitian
- Assessment of resting metabolic rate by the exercise physiologist
- Graded submaximal and/ or maximal exercise test
- Determination of self-efficacy, attitudes and barriers to physical activity by questionnaire; assess environmental and social support in regards to physical activity
- Assessment of self-efficacy, readiness to change, family situation, stress, quality of life factors, family needs and begin case coordination of treatment
- Assessment of duration, patterns, and intensity of physical activity as well as inactivity
After the two initial assessment visits, a member of the clinical team will discuss options for further treatment options within the family. Treatment recommendations will be based on each child and family's individual medical history and readiness or ability to make the necessary lifestyle changes. The child and family will receive support to make permanent lifestyle changes that will benefit not only the patient, but the entire family. The referring physician and office will receive a summary of the visits and outcomes of the assessments, as well as detailed follow-up and specialist referral recommendations.