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Assessment of Overall Prevalence of Undernutrition Using Composite Index of Anthropometric Failure (CIAF) among Preschool Children of West Bengal, India

Author(s): Gopal Chandra Mandal | Kaushik Bose

Journal: Iranian Journal of Pediatrics
ISSN 2008-2142

Volume: 19;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 237;
Date: 2009;
Original page

Keywords: Undernutrition | Stunting | Underweight | Wasting | Composite index of anthropometric failure | CIAF

Objective: Under-nutrition continues to be a primary cause of ill-health and premature mortality among children in developing countries. Present study attempted to assess the overall prevalence of undernutrition using composite index of anthropometric failure (CIAF) among rural preschool children of Arambag, Hooghly District, West Bengal, India. Methods: A total of 1012 rural children (498 boys; 514 girls) aged 2-6 years were measured. Three commonly used undernutrition indicators, ie, stunting, wasting and underweight, as well as the Composite Index of Anthropometric Failure (CIAF) were used to evaluate the nutritional status of the subjects following internationally accepted cut-off points. For assessing CIAF, Svedberg's model of six groups of children was used. Findings: Among the studied children, 26.6%, 50.0% and 63.3% were stunted, wasted and under weight, respectively. The CIAF showed a higher prevalence of undernutrition of 73.1% of the studied children suffering from anthropometric failure, in comparison to other three indicators (stunting, underweight and wasting). Out of six subgroups of CIAF with undernourished children, group C (containing children who are wasted and underweight) is the highest (32.0%), more-or less one-third of the studied children and children of group F (stunted only) is the lowest (2.7%). Group B (wasting only) and Y (underweight only) show the same prevalence ie 7.2% and 7.1% respectively. Children who simultaneously have wasting, stunting and underweight (ie group D) account for 10.7%. There was no significant age group difference between no failure and CIAF. Conclusion: We found that CIAF may be a better indicator of nutritional stress as compared to the traditional measures of stunting, underweight and wasting. The distinct advantage of the CIAF may be that it can highlight the seriousness and severity of overall undernutrition ie the actual load of undernutrition in a population.
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