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Application of antibiotics before 3 years of age increases the risk of childhood overweight and obesity.
Experimental and Therapeutic Medicine  (IF2.447),  Pub Date : 2020-11-19, DOI: 10.3892/etm.2020.9488
Jiuzhen Tian, Honghua Liu, Hua Guo, Weiping Han, Hui Ding, Tong Chen

Childhood obesity and antibiotics abuse have become global health problems. It is necessary to explore the correlation between application of antibiotics for children under 3 and the risk of overweight and obesity in children. In the present study, young children aged 3 (36-38 months) were investigated using a face-to-face questionnaire survey. These children were admitted to Dongying City Children's Hospital from December 2017 to May 2019, and the effective sample size was 4,258. According to the body mass index (BMI), young children were divided into two groups, including emaciation and normal group as well as overweight and obesity group. Univariate analysis was performed to identify the possible influencing factors between the two groups using chi-square test. A difference of P<0.05 indicated statistical significance of a certain factor between the two groups, which could be adopted as an influencing factor in Logistic regression analysis. In addition, odds ratios (ORs) and the corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were employed to quantify the correlation of antibiotic application with the risk of overweight and obesity. A total of 3,322 young children (78.0%) were included in the antibiotic group while the remaining 936 (22.0%) were enrolled in the non-antibiotic group. Logistic regression analysis revealed that antibiotic application increased the risk of overweight and obesity among the 3-year-old young children (OR, 1.44; 95% CI, 1.03-2.01). In addition, application of antibiotics for five times or higher significantly increased the risk of overweight and obesity (OR, 1.73; 95% CI, 1.07-2.80), and such risks were more significant in children who were administered antibiotics for the first time within 6 months of age (OR, 1.71; 95% CI, 1.08-2.69). The application of antibiotics in infants and young children was thus revealed to increase the risk of overweight and obesity at the age of 3 in a frequency-dependent manner.