Standardized techniques for caliper measurement of skinfold thickness have been established during the past decade and investigators are accumulating data. The skinfold thickness appears to serve as an indicator of relative fatness in adults in whom correlations between this and other methods which estimate body fat have been obtained. Even in adults insufficient data are available to judge the precision of the method. Uncontrolled variables such as skin compressibility and the normal flux in subcutaneous fat thickness characteristic of growing subjects may reduce the significance of measurements in early life. Although this technique may ultimately provide a practical clinical tool for assessing adiposity of individual children, basic reference data must be accumulated before either the precision or the usefulness of the method can be established.
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