Wash U to Conduct Children's Weight Loss Study; Looks for Local Families to Participate

Washington University School of Medicine is looking for children ages 7 to 11 years old, who are heavy for their age, to participate in a weight loss and family health study. Parents and children will learn strategies for healthy eating and weight loss.

This research study, called COMPASS (Comprehensive Maintenance Program to Achieve Sustained Success), is supported by a grant through the National Institutes of Health. The goal of this study is to determine the best treatment for long-term weight management in overweight children and their families.


A past study found that children who lose weight were able to keep it off more effectively if they participated in a maintenance-targeted treatment program. This study hopes to further investigate what length, frequency and type of treatment is effective.

In the COMPASS study, children and parents will start with four months of intensive, family-based intervention to help them lose weight. During the next eight months, families will be divided into three groups: intensive weight maintenance therapy called social facilitation maintenance (SFM); a slightly less intense version of SFM therapy; or health education about how to maintain weight loss and live healthy lives.

All families involved will receive a proven intervention to help parents and kids lose weight.

To be considered for this study, children must:

• Be 7 to 11 years old

• Be heavy for their age/gender

• Have a parent who is also overweight

To determine if your child is eligible to participate, you and your child will be asked to complete an eligibility assessment. Both parent and child's height and weight will be measured. In addition, standard questions will be asked by a trained interviewer to determine eligibility.

The entire study lasts 24 months, with family-based behavioral weight control treatment sessions during the first 12 months and follow-up assessments during the second 12 months. Families will receive $225 if they complete the entire study.

To find out more information or to volunteer for this study, please contact Molly at 314-286-1055 or email [email protected]

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