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To Evaluate the Correlation between Body Mass Index(BMI) and Percentage of Body Fat and the Occurrence of Menstrual Irregularities in Athletes.



Women are increasingly becoming active  participants in competitive and recreational physical activity.  A substantial proportion of these women develop menstrual irregularities. Aim -The aim of the present study is to compare BMI and percentage of body fat between oligomenorrhoeic and eumenorrhoeic athletes. Methods - The study was a case control study conducted among female athletes at Dr.MGR  Stadium, Race Course, Madurai.A random sample of 30   oligomenorrhoeic sprinters and 30 eumenorrhoeic sprinters of age 18 - 25 years were taken as cases and controls and were studied through interview by a structured questionnaire to elicit details of menstrual history and anthropometric measurements obtained by physical examination. BMI was calculated using Quetelet Index and percentage of body fat determined using skin fold caliper. Results - There was no significant difference in BMI between the cases and the controls ( p greater than 0.05) but there is a significant decrease in the percentage of body fat in cases compared to that of the controls showing statistical significance, with a p value of 0.003. Conclusion - The data suggests that estimation of percentage of body fat gave a better correlation to menstrual status than the body mass index. Thus, proper nutritional advice based on such evaluation should be an essential component in treating menstrual dysfunction in the athletes.


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