Estimates the Body Mass Index and Body Surface Area.
The BMI has been criticized for being an inappropriate measure for very muscular individuals who are in excellent physical condition, and also being inappropriate in some ethnic groups of differing heights and stature.
Some medications are calculated using body surface area as opposed to body weight.
The equation was originally created by Adolphe Quetelet, a Belgian, in 1832 as a method to define the standard proportions of the human build. Only in the last half century has the BMI been used as a means to determine body-fat percentage. Ancel Keys, a physiology professor, used Quetelet's equation as part of a 1972 published report on obesity and created the name body mass index or BMI. While widely used in population health studies, the BMI equation has been critiqued for its use in individual diagnoses for determining whether someone is overweight or obese.