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The Association Between Body Mass Index and Pulmonary Thromboembolism in an Autopsy Population

Authors

  • Hannah E. Rosenfeld,

    1. The University of Adelaide Medical School, Frome Road, Adelaide, SA 5005.
    2. Forensic Science SA, 21 Divett Place, Adelaide, SA 5000, Australia.
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  • Michael Tsokos M.D.,

    1. Institute of Legal Medicine and Forensic Sciences, Charité University, Turmstr. 21 (Haus L), 10559, Berlin, Germany.
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  • Roger W. Byard M.D.

    1. The University of Adelaide Medical School, Frome Road, Adelaide, SA 5005.
    2. Forensic Science SA, 21 Divett Place, Adelaide, SA 5000, Australia.
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Additional information and reprint requests:
Roger W. Byard, M.B.B.S., M.D. Professor
Discipline of Anatomy and Pathology
Level 3 Medical School North Building
The University of Adelaide
Frome Road
Adelaide
SA 5005
Australia
E-mail: roger.byard@sa.gov.au

Abstract

Abstract:  To evaluate the association between obesity and pulmonary thromboembolism (PTE) in a forensic context, 160 autopsy cases of fatal PTE were compared with age- and gender-matched controls. The mean age of cases was 66 years (range 26–98 years; M/F 74:86). The mean body mass index (BMI) of cases with PTE was 30.88 (range 14.95–79.51), which was significantly higher than in the controls (mean BMI = 25.33; range 12.49–61.84) (< 0.0001). Comparing the group with PTE with controls showed that five (3.1%) compared to 20 (12.5%) were underweight, 39 (24.4%) compared to 67 (41.88%) were of normal weight, 49 (30.63%) compared to 43 (26.88%) were overweight, 43 (26.88%) compared to 24 (15%) were obese, and 24 (15.0%) compared to six (3.75%) were morbidly obese. In each category of above-normal BMIs, there were significantly greater numbers in the groups with PTE: overweight (< 0.01), obese (< 0.001), and morbidly obese (< 0.0001).

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