Malnutrition among children in an urban Indian slum and its associations.

Abstract

In a cross-sectional study in Bhopal, India, mothers and other family members were surveyed by questionnaire, then 1000 randomly selected slum children were clinically examined, to detect nutritional deficiency diseases. Anthropometric measurements were also taken. Malnutrition classification followed the Harvard classification (weight in relation to the age of the child) modified by the Indian Academy of Pediatrics. The weight of the children was recorded using the Avery personal weighing machine. Of the 1000 children, 520 were males and 480 were females almost matched in age and birth order. The prevalence of various nutritional deficiency diseases comprised: protein calorie malnutrition (63.4%), vitamin A deficiency (23.4%), vitamin B deficiency (16.2%), vitamin C deficiency (2.6%), vitamin D deficiency (9.4%), fluorine deficiency (2.9%), and anemia (7.2%). The prevalence of malnutrition was 65.0% among females compared to 61.9% in males (p 0.05). However, higher grades of malnutrition (III+IV) were 13.12% among females in comparison to 7.87% among males (p 0.05); whereas lower grades of malnutrition (I+II) were 54.04% among males and 51.87% among females (p0.05). The birth order of the children was positively associated with their grades of malnutrition (p 0.05). On the other hand, an inverse relationship was observed between birth interval and grades of malnutrition (p 0.05). The prevalence of malnutrition was significantly higher among those children whose fathers were illiterate (p 0.05). In general, as the literacy status of father increased, the prevalence of malnutrition among children decreased. The prevalence of malnutrition had a positive association (p 0.05) with children's family size: 3 members (47.0%), 4-6 members (63.9%), and 7 members and above (70.6%). On the other hand, an inverse correlation was observed between socioeconomic status and the prevalence of malnutrition (p 0.05). The prevalence of malnutrition was significantly (p 0.05) higher among the children with a history of infection (81.8%) and worm infestation (77.0%) in comparison to those without history of infection (13.1%) and worm infestation (61.9%), respectively. Similarly, nonimmunized children experienced more malnutrition (66.4%) in comparison to immunized children (57.0%).

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@article{Dwivedi1992MalnutritionAC, title={Malnutrition among children in an urban Indian slum and its associations.}, author={Sada Nand Dwivedi and Nandini Banerjee and Om Prakash Yadav}, journal={Indian journal of maternal and child health : official publication of Indian Maternal and Child Health Association}, year={1992}, volume={3 3}, pages={79-81} }