Healthy Living

Exergaming for Health

Amy Christison, MD

Sponsoring Agency: Children’s Miracle Network

Exergaming for Health is a community based program for overweight children which incorporates a nutritional, behavioral and activity based curriculum with the intention to help children and their families become healthier.  Its use of active videogame units as the activity portion of the program makes it a novel and possibly fun and sustainable approach to weight management for children. This research study will assess the effectiveness of this weight intervention program by comparing it to information based dietary education alone by measuring body mass index (BMI) z-scores (relative body mass for age and sex).  It will also determine if this program improves activity levels, cardiovascular fitness, physical self-perception, eating habits and reduction in screen time. Participants will be randomly assigned to the exergaming group or the nutrition education group. Measurements of their BMI z-scores, cardiovascular fitness, questionnaires reflecting nutrition, screen time and physical self-perception will be performed at the beginning, 6 months and 12 months of the project. Establishing effective weight management programs for children is a top priority in our nation’s healthcare initiatives. Designing an effective curriculum for weight management intervention services for children in our community, develop an effective weight management curriculum for a multidisciplinary obesity clinic, and fill gaps in the medical literature with stronger scientific evidence establishing the role of exergaming in pediatric obesity management.

The objective of this study is to determine the effectiveness of a community based multifaceted pediatric weight management program incorporating exergaming technology in its curriculum. The aim is to reduce BMI z-scores of the treatment group more than the control group undergoing information based dietary education alone. Secondary aims include improvement of activity levels, cardiovascular fitness, physical self-perception, eating habits, reduction of screen time and sustainability of anthropomorphic changes. Establishing effective management of childhood obesity is a top national healthcare initiative.

Managing Expectations in Pediatric Weight Management: A Pilot Study in Focus on a Fitter Future III Hospitals

Amy Christison, MD

Objectives of this project.

1.To determine whether patient and family congruence between treatment expectations and self-reported progress in these domains is associated with attrition at 3 months. We intend to test this aim with the following hypothesis:
H1:   Congruence between treatment expectations and self-reported progress at 3 months will be associated with reduced attrition.

2. To assess feasibility of implementation of a standardized tool to assess patient and family treatment expectations across a variety of pediatric weight management program and clinic formats. We intend to test this aim with the following hypothesis:
H2: A tool to assess learning goals and expectations from patients and families attending a pediatric weight management program can be implemented across multiple institutions with varying size and program formats.

Additionally, we will explore the following potential relationships:

(1) Congruent needs and expectations are less likely for families with a greater number of needs, with needs in multiple domains, and when the parent and patient have differing expectations.

(2) Adolescents and parent/guardians with matched program expectations will demonstrate reduced attrition at 3 months.

(3) Congruent needs and expectations at 3 months will be associated with a significant improvement in BMI z-score.