Obesity without metabolic disorder and silent brain infarcts in aneurologically healthy population

Ki Woong Nam, Hyung Min Kwon, Han Yeong Jeong, Jin Ho Park, Hyuktae Kwon, Su Min Jeong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective: Obesity without metabolic disorder [Ob(+)MD(−)] is a unique subcategory of obesity where individuals are protected from the obesity-related complications. Although conflicting clinical outcomes have been reported, there has been no study of the effects of Ob(+)MD(−) on cerebrovascular disease. In this study, we evaluated the association between the Ob(+)MD(−) phenotype and silent brain infarcts (SBI) in a neurologically healthy population. Subjects/methods: We evaluated a consecutive series of healthy volunteers recruited between January 2006 and December 2013. MD(−) status was assessed using five clinical markers: blood pressure, triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein, fasting plasma glucose, and waist circumference. Obesity was defined when body mass index ≥ 25 kg/m2. SBI was defined as asymptomatic, well-defined lesions with a diameter ≥ 3 mm with the same signal characteristics as the cerebrospinal fluid on T1- or T2-weighted images. Results: A total of 3165 subjects were assessed, and 262 (8%) SBI cases were identified. In multivariate analyses, non-obesity with metabolic disorder [Ob(−)MD(+)] (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 1.65, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.07–2.56, P = 0.025) and obesity with metabolic disorder [Ob(+)MD(+)] (aOR = 1.75, 95% CI = 1.12–2.75, P = 0.014) were closely associated with SBI after adjustment for confounders. Meanwhile, Ob(+)MD(−) did not show any significant association with SBI (aOR = 0.85, 95% CI = 0.20–3.72, P = 0.832). These findings may indicate that metabolic abnormality, irrespective of obesity status, is a main risk factor of SBI. When we compared SBI burdens between the four metabolic phenotypes, the Ob(+)MD(+) and Ob(−)MD(+) groups had higher rates of multiple lesions than the Ob(+)MD(−) and non-obesity without metabolic disorder groups. Conclusions: The presence of metabolic abnormality, and not obesity per se, is independently associated with the prevalence of SBI in a healthy population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)362-367
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Obesity
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2020

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