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The cardiovascular risk factors


- Definition, A few explanations
- The cardiovascular complications of obesity


Obesity is a state characterized by an absolute and relative excess of the reserves fat stocked in the adipose tissue.



The fat mass is normally present in the organism in reasonable quantity, proportional to the height. The exact measure of the fat mass is very difficult; therefore, an obesity corresponds more often to an overweight. Thus, an overweight is defined in relation to a partly arbitrary basis of reference, called ideal or theoretical weight, provided by charts or validated formulas.

By convention, obesity is defined when the weight exceeds 15 to 20% of the desirable weight.

The body mass index sometimes tends to replace the ideal weight. This index is defined by the weight ratio, on the height raised to the square. This index is called the Quételet’s index:

Quételet’s index = W/H²

The risks for health begin to rise beyond 25 whatever the sex, and physicians speak of obesity when this number passes 27.

The exact origins of obesity are not known at present but some tracks are exploited as the one of the genetic factors, indisputable but badly known. The environment factors also seem very important, such as the physical activity, the diversity and the abundance of food. Finally, the psychosocial and cultural factors are determining, in particular stress and the different emotional disruptions.

In fact, these different factors associate mutually and result in the creation of an obesity.

File last reviewed on dec 18, 2011


The coronarography, literally meaning the “x-ray of the coronary arteries”, is an exam requiring to puncture an artery of a member in order to introduce a hose through which a product impervious to X-rays will be injected, directly into the coronary arteries. More

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Visit the Blood Pressure & Hypertension web site.

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