A Study on Risk Factors of Under-nutrition of under-five children in an urban area of Malda district, West Bengal
Keywords:Under nutrition, Underweight, Under-five children, Urban
Introduction: Under-nutrition is highly prevalent in developing countries including India. Many risk factors are responsible for the occurrence of under-nutrition. To understand area specific causes (risk factors) responsible for under-nutrition among under-five children in Malda town, a case control study was undertaken. Methods: Forty two cases with under-nutrition (weight for age <-2SD) and 84 controls with normal weight (weight for age ≥ -2SD were selected from 6 ICDS centres in 1:2 ratio. Results: Of the selected cases, 22(52.4%) were moderately underweight and 20 (47.6%) were severely underweight; 57% were male & 43% were female children. 55% Mothers of severely underweight children were illiterate whereas 65% fathers of severely under-weight children were labourer. From bivariate analysis it was reflected that no statistical differences were there between underweight & normal weight children with respect to variables like family size, per capita family income, Maternal age at child birth, birth weight, breast feeding & its duration, diarrhoea and worm infestation(p>.05). Factors like fathers’ occupation, ARI (38.1% vs17.8%), feeding problems (65% vs. 40.5%), incomplete vaccination (73.8% vs39.3%) were associated with under-nutrition (P<.01). Undernourished children showed statistical association with angular stomatitis, conjunctival xerosis, bilateral oedema & severe wasting compared to normal nourished children. (p<.01). Conclusion: Factors like fathers’ occupation, ARI, feeding problems, incomplete vaccination were associated with under-nutrition of under-fives attending ICDS centres in an urban setting of Malda district, West Bengal.
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