Publications by authors named "Ahmed Abdelalim"

15 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Management Strategies of Patients with Neuromyelitis Optica Spectrum Disorder During the COVID-19 Pandemic Era.

Ther Clin Risk Manag 2020 17;16:759-767. Epub 2020 Aug 17.

Neurology Department, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

The ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is a global health emergency of international concern and has affected management plans of many autoimmune disorders. Immunosuppressive and immunomodulatory therapies are pivotal in the management of neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD), potentially placing patients at an increased risk of contracting infections such as COVID-19. The optimal management strategy of NMOSD during the COVID-19 era remains unclear. Here, however, we examined the evidence of NMOSD disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) use during the present period and highlighted different scenarios including treatment of relapses as well as initiation and maintenance of DMTs in order to optimize care of NMOSD patients in the COVID-19 era.
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August 2020

Estimating global injuries morbidity and mortality: methods and data used in the Global Burden of Disease 2017 study.

Inj Prev 2020 10 24;26(Supp 1):i125-i153. Epub 2020 Aug 24.

Department of Pharmacy, Adigrat University, Adigrat, Ethiopia.

Background: While there is a long history of measuring death and disability from injuries, modern research methods must account for the wide spectrum of disability that can occur in an injury, and must provide estimates with sufficient demographic, geographical and temporal detail to be useful for policy makers. The Global Burden of Disease (GBD) 2017 study used methods to provide highly detailed estimates of global injury burden that meet these criteria.

Methods: In this study, we report and discuss the methods used in GBD 2017 for injury morbidity and mortality burden estimation. In summary, these methods included estimating cause-specific mortality for every cause of injury, and then estimating incidence for every cause of injury. Non-fatal disability for each cause is then calculated based on the probabilities of suffering from different types of bodily injury experienced.

Results: GBD 2017 produced morbidity and mortality estimates for 38 causes of injury. Estimates were produced in terms of incidence, prevalence, years lived with disability, cause-specific mortality, years of life lost and disability-adjusted life-years for a 28-year period for 22 age groups, 195 countries and both sexes.

Conclusions: GBD 2017 demonstrated a complex and sophisticated series of analytical steps using the largest known database of morbidity and mortality data on injuries. GBD 2017 results should be used to help inform injury prevention policy making and resource allocation. We also identify important avenues for improving injury burden estimation in the future.
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October 2020

Managing Disease-Modifying Therapies and Breakthrough Activity in Multiple Sclerosis Patients During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Toward an Optimized Approach.

Ther Clin Risk Manag 2020 22;16:651-662. Epub 2020 Jul 22.

Neurology Department, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.

The emergence of the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has become a major public health challenge of global concern since December 2019, when the virus was recognized in Wuhan, the capital city of Hubei province in China and epicenter of the COVID-19 epidemic. Given the novelty of COVID-19 and the lack of specific anti-virus therapies, the current management is essentially supportive. There is an absence of consensus on guidelines or treatment strategies for complex disorders such as multiple sclerosis (MS), in which the risk of infections is higher than in the general population. This is due to the overall impairment of the immune system typical of autoimmune diseases, in addition to accumulation of disabilities, and the iatrogenic effect generated by corticosteroids and the recommended disease-modifying therapies (DMTs). DMTs have different modes of action, but all modulate and interfere with the patient's immune response, thereby raising concerns about adverse effects, such as an increased susceptibility to infections. In this review, we analyze the evidence for use of DMTs during the current critical period and ratify an algorithmic approach for management to optimize care between keeping DMTs, with their infection hazards, or coming off them, with the risk of disease activation. We also provide an algorithmic approach to the management of breakthrough activity during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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July 2020

Global injury morbidity and mortality from 1990 to 2017: results from the Global Burden of Disease Study 2017.

Inj Prev 2020 10 24;26(Supp 1):i96-i114. Epub 2020 Apr 24.

Faculty of Health Sciences - Health Management and Policy, American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon.

Background: Past research in population health trends has shown that injuries form a substantial burden of population health loss. Regular updates to injury burden assessments are critical. We report Global Burden of Disease (GBD) 2017 Study estimates on morbidity and mortality for all injuries.

Methods: We reviewed results for injuries from the GBD 2017 study. GBD 2017 measured injury-specific mortality and years of life lost (YLLs) using the Cause of Death Ensemble model. To measure non-fatal injuries, GBD 2017 modelled injury-specific incidence and converted this to prevalence and years lived with disability (YLDs). YLLs and YLDs were summed to calculate disability-adjusted life years (DALYs).

Findings: In 1990, there were 4 260 493 (4 085 700 to 4 396 138) injury deaths, which increased to 4 484 722 (4 332 010 to 4 585 554) deaths in 2017, while age-standardised mortality decreased from 1079 (1073 to 1086) to 738 (730 to 745) per 100 000. In 1990, there were 354 064 302 (95% uncertainty interval: 338 174 876 to 371 610 802) new cases of injury globally, which increased to 520 710 288 (493 430 247 to 547 988 635) new cases in 2017. During this time, age-standardised incidence decreased non-significantly from 6824 (6534 to 7147) to 6763 (6412 to 7118) per 100 000. Between 1990 and 2017, age-standardised DALYs decreased from 4947 (4655 to 5233) per 100 000 to 3267 (3058 to 3505).

Interpretation: Injuries are an important cause of health loss globally, though mortality has declined between 1990 and 2017. Future research in injury burden should focus on prevention in high-burden populations, improving data collection and ensuring access to medical care.
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October 2020

Interferon-Beta-Induced Headache in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis: Frequency and Characterization.

J Pain Res 2020 11;13:537-545. Epub 2020 Mar 11.

Neurology Department, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Background: Studies have shown that interferon-beta (IFN-β) treatment is associated with headaches in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS). Headaches can affect quality of life and overall function of patients with MS. We examined the frequency, relationships, patterns, and characteristics of headaches in response to IFN-β in patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS).

Patients And Methods: This study was a prospective, longitudinal analysis with 1-year follow-up. The study comprised 796 patients with RRMS treated with IFN-β (mean age 30.84±8.98 years) at 5 tertiary referral center outpatient clinics in Egypt between January 2015 and December 2017. Headaches were diagnosed according to the International Classification of Headache Disorders ICHD-3 (beta version), and data were collected through an interviewer-administered Arabic-language-validated questionnaire with an addendum specifically designed to investigate the temporal relationship between commencement of interferon treatment, and headache onset and characteristics.

Results: Two hundred seventy-six patients had pre-existing headaches, and 356 experienced de novo headaches. Of 122 patients who experienced headaches before IFN-β treatment, 55 reported headaches that worsened following onset of IFN-β treatment. In patients with post-IFN-β headaches, 329 had headaches that persisted for >3 months, 51 had chronic headaches, and 278 had episodic headaches, and 216 of these patients required preventive therapies. Univariate analysis showed a >6- and an approximately 5-fold increased risk of headache among those treated with intramuscular (IM) INF-β-1a (OR 6.51; 95% CI: 3.73-10.01; P-value <0.0001) and 44 μg of SC INF-β-1a (OR 5.44; 95% CI: 3.15-9.37; P-value <0.0001), respectively, compared with that in patients who received 22 μg of SC INF-β-1a.

Conclusion: Interferon-β therapy aggravated pre-existing headaches and caused primary headaches in patients with MS. Headache risk was greater following treatment with IM INF-β-1a and 44 μg SC INF-β-1a.
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March 2020

Global, Regional, and National Cancer Incidence, Mortality, Years of Life Lost, Years Lived With Disability, and Disability-Adjusted Life-Years for 29 Cancer Groups, 1990 to 2017: A Systematic Analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study.

JAMA Oncol 2019 12;5(12):1749-1768

Department of Family and Community Medicine, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia.

Importance: Cancer and other noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) are now widely recognized as a threat to global development. The latest United Nations high-level meeting on NCDs reaffirmed this observation and also highlighted the slow progress in meeting the 2011 Political Declaration on the Prevention and Control of Noncommunicable Diseases and the third Sustainable Development Goal. Lack of situational analyses, priority setting, and budgeting have been identified as major obstacles in achieving these goals. All of these have in common that they require information on the local cancer epidemiology. The Global Burden of Disease (GBD) study is uniquely poised to provide these crucial data.

Objective: To describe cancer burden for 29 cancer groups in 195 countries from 1990 through 2017 to provide data needed for cancer control planning.

Evidence Review: We used the GBD study estimation methods to describe cancer incidence, mortality, years lived with disability, years of life lost, and disability-adjusted life-years (DALYs). Results are presented at the national level as well as by Socio-demographic Index (SDI), a composite indicator of income, educational attainment, and total fertility rate. We also analyzed the influence of the epidemiological vs the demographic transition on cancer incidence.

Findings: In 2017, there were 24.5 million incident cancer cases worldwide (16.8 million without nonmelanoma skin cancer [NMSC]) and 9.6 million cancer deaths. The majority of cancer DALYs came from years of life lost (97%), and only 3% came from years lived with disability. The odds of developing cancer were the lowest in the low SDI quintile (1 in 7) and the highest in the high SDI quintile (1 in 2) for both sexes. In 2017, the most common incident cancers in men were NMSC (4.3 million incident cases); tracheal, bronchus, and lung (TBL) cancer (1.5 million incident cases); and prostate cancer (1.3 million incident cases). The most common causes of cancer deaths and DALYs for men were TBL cancer (1.3 million deaths and 28.4 million DALYs), liver cancer (572 000 deaths and 15.2 million DALYs), and stomach cancer (542 000 deaths and 12.2 million DALYs). For women in 2017, the most common incident cancers were NMSC (3.3 million incident cases), breast cancer (1.9 million incident cases), and colorectal cancer (819 000 incident cases). The leading causes of cancer deaths and DALYs for women were breast cancer (601 000 deaths and 17.4 million DALYs), TBL cancer (596 000 deaths and 12.6 million DALYs), and colorectal cancer (414 000 deaths and 8.3 million DALYs).

Conclusions And Relevance: The national epidemiological profiles of cancer burden in the GBD study show large heterogeneities, which are a reflection of different exposures to risk factors, economic settings, lifestyles, and access to care and screening. The GBD study can be used by policy makers and other stakeholders to develop and improve national and local cancer control in order to achieve the global targets and improve equity in cancer care.
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December 2019

Quantitative evaluation of shoulder proprioception 6 months following stroke.

Egypt J Neurol Psychiatr Neurosurg 2018 6;54(1):31. Epub 2018 Nov 6.

1Department of Neuromuscular Disorders and its Surgery, Faculty of Physical Therapy, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Background: Chronic shoulder pain following cerebrovascular stroke (CVS) is a major problem that persists after maximum recovery of motor functions. Such pain has been attributed to altered shoulder joint kinematics causing soft tissue damage.

Aim: Evaluation of shoulder proprioception in the ipsilateral paretic arm and contralateral unaffected side 6 months following cerebrovascular event.

Subject And Method: Thirty adult patients (G1) with ischemic strokes ranging from 6 months to 1 year and 30 healthy control (G2) were assessed for shoulder proprioception. Angular displacement error was measured during active and passive repositioning of shoulder external and internal rotation in both patients' shoulders and in control's dominant upper limb.

Results: Statistically significant increase in angular displacement error was found in all tests in the affected shoulder compared to the unaffected contralateral shoulder and dominant arm of control subjects. The contralateral unaffected shoulder of patients showed within normal values and no differences with control values. Passive external and internal rotations showed statistically higher errors in patients with cortical lesions compared to those with subcortical lesions.

Conclusion: Six months following the CVS, shoulder proprioception deficit in the affected hemiparetic side persists. Contralateral side shows no abnormalities. Cortical lesions might be associated with late shoulder proprioception recovery compared to subcortical lesions. The side of the lesion does not seem to affect the severity of proprioception deficit.
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November 2018

Colonic Stem Cells Expression of Lgr5 and CD133 Proteins as Predictive Markers in Colorectal Cancer among Egyptian Patients.

Open Access Maced J Med Sci 2018 Jun 7;6(6):968-974. Epub 2018 Jun 7.

Tropical Medicine Department, Nasser Institute Hospital, Cairo, Egypt.

Aim: Colorectal cancer is the fourth common tumour in Egypt after lymphoid, breast and urinary tumours. The study aims to assess the expression of Lgr5 and CD133 in pre-malignant (adenomatous polyps and IBD), malignant colorectal lesions and normal colonic mucosa by immunohistochemical staining.

Material And Methods: This prospective study was done on 100 patients presenting with colonic symptoms, patients were divided into four groups; group I including 20 patients in the control group, group II including 20 ulcerative colitis (U.C) patients, group III including 20 patients with adenomatous polyps and group IV including 40 patients with colorectal cancer (CRC).

Results: Lgr5 and CD133 expression was significantly higher in carcinoma than in adenomas, IBD and normal mucosa (P < 0.001). Lrg5 and CD133 was positively correlated with histological grade (P = 0.001), depth of invasion (P = 0.001), lymph node metastasis (P < 0.001), distant metastasis (P < 0.004) and TNM stage (P < 0.001).

Conclusion: Role of Lgr5 and CD133 as stem cell marker was expressed and presented with different expression in the normal colonic mucosa, adenoma and CRC and showed increased expression in an advanced stage of CRC. This may suggest its possible involvement in colorectal tumorigenesis and invasion.
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June 2018

Announcing the new launch of .

Egypt J Neurol Psychiatr Neurosurg 2018 25;54(1). Epub 2018 Apr 25.

Helwan University School of Medicine, Cairo, Egypt.

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April 2018

Pediatric-onset multiple sclerosis in Egypt: a multi-center registry of 186 patients.

Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat 2018 23;14:631-640. Epub 2018 Feb 23.

Neurology Department, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Introduction: Although the frequency of pediatric-onset multiple sclerosis (POMS) has increased in recent decades, it is still highly uncommon, which creates a need for the involvement of more registries from various clinical centers.

Objective: To characterize the demographic, clinical, and paraclinical features of Egyptian patients with POMS.

Patients And Methods: A retrospective chart review study was undertaken on 237 Egyptian patients with demyelinating events which started before the age of 18 years who attended one of five tertiary referral centers in Cairo, Egypt.

Results: Multiple sclerosis was diagnosed in 186 patients, 47 (25.27%) patients had disease onset before the age of 12 years; "early-onset pediatric multiple sclerosis (EOPMS)". The mean age of disease onset was (14.13±2.49 years), with a female:male ratio of 1.62:1, none of the enrolled patients had a primary progressive course (PPMS), whereas 10 patients (5.38%) had a secondary progressive form. Approximately two-thirds of the patients had monofocal disease onset, and less than 10% presented with encephalopathy; most of them had EOPMS. Motor weakness was the presenting symptom in half of the patients, whereas cerebellar presentation was detected in 34.95%, mainly in EOPMS. Seizures (not related to encephalopathy) were more frequent in those with EOPMS. Initial brain magnetic resonance images were positive in all patients, with detected atypical lesions in 29.03%, enhanced lesions in 35.48%, black holes in 13.98%, and infratentorial in 34.41%. Cervical cord involvement was found in 68.28%. More than two-thirds of the patients received either immunomodulatory or immunosuppressant (IS) treatment throughout their disease course, and about half of them received their treatment within the first year from symptoms onset, with a more favorable outcome, and patients with highly active disease received natalizumab, fingolimod, or other IS.

Conclusion: The results from this registry - the largest for MS in the Arab region to date - are comparable to other registries. Immunomodulatory therapies in POMS are well tolerated and efficacious and they can improve the long-term outcome in children.
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February 2018

Relation of serum levels of homocysteine, vitamin B12 and folate to cognitive functions in multiple sclerosis patients.

Int J Neurosci 2018 Sep 21;128(9):835-841. Epub 2018 Feb 21.

a Department of Neurology, Faculty of Medicine , Cairo University , Cairo , Egypt.

Background: Hyperhomocysteinemia, vitamin B12 and folate deficiency have been linked to cognitive dysfunction in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients.

Objective: This study aimed to investigate the relation of serum homocysteine (Hcy), vitamin B12 and folate to cognitive functions in MS patients.

Subjects And Methods: Forty-five MS patients and twenty matched healthy controls were included. Subjects were submitted to cognitive assessment using a selected psychometric battery and measurement of serum levels of homocysteine, B12 and folic acid.

Results: MS patients showed significant worse performance in cognitive scales compared to controls (P  ≤ 0.05). Serum homocysteine, vitamin B12 and folate showed no significant difference between patients and controls (P  > 0.05). Serum homocysteine was negatively correlated with total score of Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination (ACE), paced auditory serial addition test and controlled oral word association test scores. Serum vitamin B12 was positively correlated with ACE language, visuospatial and total scores and negatively correlated with trail making B score. Serum folate was significantly positively correlated with ACE language and total scores. Homocysteine was the only significant predictor for cognitive impairment in MS patients.

Conclusion: Serum homocysteine may play a role in cognitive dysfunction in MS patients.
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September 2018

Characteristics and predictors of progression in an Egyptian multiple sclerosis cohort: a multicenter registry study.

Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat 2017 18;13:1895-1903. Epub 2017 Jul 18.

Neurology Department, Cairo University.

Background: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a complex autoimmune disease with a heterogeneous presentation and diverse disease course. Recent studies indicate a rising prevalence of MS in the Middle East.

Objective: To characterize the demographics and disease features of Egyptian patients attending four tertiary referral MS centers in Cairo.

Materials And Methods: This was a retrospective, observational study on 1,581 patients between 2001 and 2015. Medical records were reviewed and data were identified and extracted in a standardized electronic registry.

Results: The mean age of disease onset was 26.6±7.8 years, with the majority being female (2.11:1). Relapsing-remitting MS was the most common type (75.1%). The main presenting symptom was motor weakness (43.9%), which was also the most frequent symptom during the disease course. Family history of MS was found in 2.28%. Higher initial Expanded Disability Status Scale score, black holes, and infratentorial lesions on initial magnetic resonance imaging were independent factors for disease progression by univariate analysis (OR 3.87 [95% CI 1.84-6.51], 4.14 [95% CI 3.08-5.58], 4.07 [95% CI 3.21-4.99], respectively); however, in multivariate analysis, only infratentorial lesions were an independent risk for disease progression (OR 6, 95% CI 2.99-12.02; =0.0005).

Conclusion: The results from this registry - the largest for MS in the Arab region to date - are comparable to other registries with slight differences.
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July 2017

Clinical patterns and outcomes of status epilepticus in patients with tuberous sclerosis complex.

Ther Clin Risk Manag 2017 30;13:779-785. Epub 2017 Jun 30.

Department of Neurology, Cairo University, Giza.

Introduction: Refractory epilepsy is a common clinical manifestation in patients with tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), which can be complicated by many life-threatening conditions, such as status epilepticus (SE). However, very few reports mention the patterns and semiology of SE in those patients.

Objective: To study the clinical characteristics and outcomes of SE in TSC patients.

Materials And Methods: This observational, prospective study was carried out on 36 Egyptian children with definite TSC. Clinical history, general and neurological examination and psychometric evaluation by standard questionnaires were used to explore characteristics of epileptic manifestations and clinical patterns of SE. All included patients were required to have long-term video electroencephalograms (EEGs) and brain MRI performed.

Results: A total of 32 attacks of SE were recorded in 21 patients (58.3%) in our cohort during a follow-up period of 2.8±1.1 years; of those patients, 15 had convulsive status, 7 had non-convulsive SE, 6 had refractory/super-refractory SE and 14 patients had a history of infantile spasms (epileptic spasms). The duration of status ranged from 40 to 150 min (mean ± standard deviation: 90±15). Fourteen patients with SE had severe mental retardation, 9 had autistic spectrum disorder and 22 had severe epileptogenic EEG findings. Patients with SE had higher tuber numbers (mean: 9.6), 5 patients had subependymal giant cell astrocytomas and 2 patients had their SE after receiving everolimus.

Conclusions: The incidence of SE in our patient sample is high (>50%); severe mental retardation, autistic features, history of infantile spasm (epileptic spasms) and high tuber burden are risk factors for developing SE.
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June 2017

The long-term prognosis of newly diagnosed epilepsy in Egypt: A retrospective cohort study from an epilepsy center in Greater Cairo.

Seizure 2016 Oct 1;41:86-95. Epub 2016 Aug 1.

IRCCS - Istituto Mario Negri, Milano, Italy. Electronic address:

Purpose: To investigate the long-term prognosis and prognostic patterns of epilepsy in a single practice study from a developing country.

Methods: Consecutive patients first seen in an epilepsy clinic in Cairo, Egypt between January 1994 and December 2009 with at least 4 years of follow-up were included. Demographic, clinical, EEG and imaging findings at diagnosis were recorded. At follow-up, treatment was adjusted as clinically indicated. The response to the first drug was defined as 6-month seizure remission. Outcome measures included 2-year remission (R) and 2-year sustained remission (SR). Prognostic patterns were early (ER) and late remission (LR), relapsing-remitting (RR) course, worsening course (WC) and no remission.

Results: Included were 287 patients aged 1-66 years and followed for 2237.0 person-years (mean 7.8 years). 244 (85%) attained 2-year R. The cumulative time dependent probability of R was 86.7% at 10 years. Only the response to the first drug predicted R. 82 (28.6%) attained 2-year SR. The probability of SR was 40.9% at 10 years. Poor treatment response and nocturnal seizures predicted lowered SR. R and SR were inversely correlated to the number of drugs. 208 patients (72.5%) entered ER, 36 (12.5%) entered LR, 138 (48.1%) had RR course. A WC was present in 24 (8.4%), 43 (15.0%) never entered remission. Prognostic patterns varied with neurological examination, MRI findings, pre-treatment seizure frequency, seizure type, number of seizure types, etiology, syndrome and response to first drug.

Conclusions: The long-term prognosis of newly diagnosed epilepsy patients from a developing country is in keeping with published reports.
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October 2016

Childhood obesity and academic achievement among male students in public primary schools in Kuwait.

Med Princ Pract 2012 20;21(1):14-9. Epub 2011 Oct 20.

Department of Community Medicine and Behavioural Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, Health Sciences Centre, Kuwait University, Jabriya, Kuwait.

Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate the association between childhood obesity and student academic performance in the classroom setting.

Subjects And Methods: A multi-stage cluster random sampling was used to select a representative sample of 1,213 fifth-grade students in male public schools. Height and weight were measured using a standard protocol. Overweight was defined as BMI ≥85th but <95th percentile, while obesity as ≥95th BMI percentile, using growth charts provided by the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (2000). Data on each student's academic performance and sociodemographic factors were extracted from school records. Of the 1,213 students, 147 were absent on the day the survey was conducted. Therefore, the analysis was based on 1,066 students. Of the 1,066 students, 67 did not have previous school records because they were new in the school; hence the association between school performance and obesity was based on 999 students.

Results: The prevalence of obesity was 186 (17.4%, 95% CI: 15.2-19.9%) while the prevalence of overweight was 232 (21.8%, 95% CI: 19.3-24.4%). There was no significant association between obesity and academic performance after adjusting for sociodemographic factors. Parental education was the most important predictor for high academic performance in the classroom setting.

Conclusion: There is no association between obesity and academic performance in the classroom setting among boys in Kuwait. With the lack of evidence of a relationship between childhood obesity and academic performance, using high performance as a measure of success in prevention initiatives cannot be justified.
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April 2012