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Kids at Risk for Heart Problems

By: Karen Kostko
By: Karen Kostko

Last year, the Wausau School District teamed up with a few Wausau Hospital cardiologists. They studied over 700 kids in grades second, fifth, eighth, and eleventh. They tested kids for health risks related to heart problems and diabetes.

The study found that 18 percent of Wausau kids have high cholesterol, 16 percent of the kids surveyed were obese, and 28 percent had high blood pressure.

Dr. Pat Hughes works as a cardiologist with the Wausau Heart Institute. He says the risks could have lasting effects.

"This snapshot of our kids as they're growing up now really means that by the time this group of people is in their forties many more of them will have heart disease than their parents do today," Hughes says.

The findings of the study will be presented to the Wausau School Board in December. From there they hope to establish community involvement.