Malnutrition and intestinal parasitic infections in school children of Gondar, North West Ethiopia.
ABSTRACT In developing countries, malnutrition is a considerable health problem with prevalence ranges of 4-46%, with 1-10% severely malnourished.
This study aimed to determine the prevalence of malnutrition and intestinal parasitoses and identify risk factors of malnutrition in schoolchildren.
A cross-sectional study was carried out on 322 schoolchildren, of age 6 to 14 years, attending private and government primary schools, in Gonder town, North West Ethiopia. The study was conducted from December 2006 to February 2007. Nutritional status of these children was determined using anthropometric parameters (weight-for-age, height-for-age and weight-for-height). Epi Info 2000 software was used to evaluate anthropometric results of each individual and formol-ether concentration technique was employed to identify parasites.
The prevalence of underweight, stunting, wasting and intestinal parasitoses was 34.8%, 27%, 50% and 55.6%, respectively. Parasites encountered during the study were Ascaris lumbricoides (17.8%), Trichuiris trichiura (3.4%), hookworm (4.3%), Giardia lamblia (9%), Entamoeba histolytica (2.1%), Schistosoma mansoni (2.4%), Hymenolepis nana (4.7%) and Enterobius vermicularis (0.31%), respectively, in single infections. Only two cases of Strongyloides stercoralis was found in multiple infections and none in single infections. The prevalence of multiple parasitoses was 10.9%. Maternal literacy status, sex and age of the child were significantly associated with malnutrition (p < 0.05).
Even though chronic type of malnutrition (stunting) was decreasing, indicators of acute type of malnutrition were increasing at a higher rate in the area. Implementation of maternal education and school feeding programs, avoidance of students from getting in contact with waste and river water were recommended to avoid malnutrition and intestinal parasitoses in children of the study area.
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ABSTRACT: Malnutrition, resulting from various etiologies, is common in rural Chadian women and children. This cross-sectional study assessed the spectrum of parasitic infection and level of anemia and their effect on nutritional status in settled and mobile pastoral mothers and children near Lake Chad. Intestinal parasites were evaluated using direct fecal smears and the Kato-Katz technique. Malaria status was determined using Paracheck-Pf(®) rapid diagnostic test, and anemia was assessed with the Hemocue photometer. Nutritional status was evaluated using anthropometric parameters. At the end of the 2008 wet season, the prevalence of malnutrition was 36% [confidence interval (CI) 30-42] among women and 15% (CI 11-18) among children. The prevalence of intestinal parasitic infection was 75% (CI 68-83) among women and 60% (CI 53-66) among children. The predominant helminth species was Ascaris lumbricoides while Entamoeba histolytica/dispar was the most common protozoan. The hookworm prevalence was 14% (CI 8-20) in women and 18% (CI 13-23) in children. Malaria prevalence was low among women (1%, CI 0.5-2) and children (3% CI 2-5). No significant difference was observed in the prevalence of parasitic infection between the mobile pastoralist and rural sedentary populations. Thirty-four percent (CI 27-40) of nonpregnant women, 53% (CI 34-72) of pregnant women, and 27% (CI 23-32) of children were anemic. In subjects infected with Plasmodium, all women and 54% (CI 22-85) of children were anemic. Malnutrition was significantly associated with anemia in mothers and with selected intestinal parasites, anemia and age in their children.EcoHealth 12/2011; 9(2):122-31. · 2.20 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Several micronutrients are essential for adequate growth of children. However, little information is available on multiple micronutrient status of school children in Ethiopia. The present study was designed to evaluate the relationship between multiple micronutrient levels and nutritional status among school children. METHOD: In this cross-sectional study, anthropometric data, blood and stool samples were collected from 100 children at Meseret Elementary School in Gondar town, Northwest Ethiopia. Serum concentration of magnesium, calcium, iron, copper, zinc, selenium and molybdenum were measured by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer. Anthropometric indices of weight-for-age, height-for-age and BMI-for-age were used to estimate the children's nutritional status. Stool samples were examined by standard microscopic methods for intestinal parasites. RESULTS: The prevalence of stunting, underweight, wasting and intestinal parasitoses among school children was 23%, 21%, 11% and18%, respectively. The mean serum levels of magnesium, calcium, iron, copper, zinc, selenium and molybdenum were 2.42+/-0.32 (mg/dl), 15.31+/-2.14 (mg/dl), 328.19+/-148.91 (mug/dl), 191.30+/-50.17 (mug/dl), 86.40+/-42.40 (mug/dl), 6.32+/-2.59 (mug/dl), and 0.23+/-0.15 (mug/dl), respectively. Selenium deficiency, zinc deficiency and magnesium deficiency occurred in 62%, 47%, and 2% of the school children, respectively. Height-for-age showed significant positive correlation with the levels of copper and molybdenum (p = 0.01) and with the levels of magnesium (p = 0.05). CONCLUSION: Deficiencies of selenium and zinc were high among the school children although the deficiencies were not significantly related with their nutritional status. The prevalence of both malnutrition and intestinal parasitism was not negligible. These calls for the need to undertake multicentre studies in various parts of the country to substantiate the data obtained in the present study so that appropriate and beneficial strategies for micronutrient supplementation and interventions on nutritional deficiencies can be planned.Nutrition Journal 12/2012; 11(1):108. · 2.65 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Parasitic infections have been shown to have deleterious effects on host nutritional status. In addition, although helmintic infection can modulate the host inflammatory response directed against the parasite, a causal association between helminths and allergy remains uncertain. The present study was therefore designed to evaluate the relationship between nutritional status, parasite infection and prevalence of allergy among school children. METHODS: A cross sectional study was performed involving school children in two elementary schools in Gondar, Ethiopia. Nutritional status of these children was determined using anthropometric parameters (weight-for-age, height-for-age and BMI-for-age). Epi-Info software was used to calculate z-scores. Stool samples were examined using standard parasitological procedures. The serum IgE levels were quantified by total IgE ELISA kit following the manufacturer's instruction.Result: A total of 405 children (with mean age of 12.09.1 +/- 2.54 years) completed a self-administered allergy questionnaire and provided stool samples for analysis. Overall prevalence of underweight, stunting and thinness/wasting was 15.1%, 25.2%, 8.9%, respectively. Of the total, 22.7% were found to be positive for intestinal parasites. The most prevalent intestinal parasite detected was Ascaris lumbricoides (31/405, 7.6%). There was no statistically significant association between prevalence of malnutrition and the prevalence of parasitic infections. Median total serum IgE level was 344 IU/ml (IQR 117--2076, n = 80) and 610 IU/ml (143--1833, n = 20), respectively, in children without and with intestinal parasite infection (Z = -0.198, P > 0.8). The prevalence of self reported allergy among the subset was 8%. IgE concentration was not associated either with the presence of parasitic infection or history of allergy. CONCLUSION: The prevalence of malnutrition, intestinal parasitism and allergy was not negligible in this population. In addition, there was no significant association between the prevalence of allergy and their nutritional status, and parasite infection. Further research prospective observational and intervention studies are required to address the question of causality between nutritional factors, parasites, and allergy.BMC Pediatrics 01/2013; 13(1):7. · 1.98 Impact Factor