Mid upper arm circumference and weight for height z-score as screening tools for acute malnutrition in underweight children <5 years of age

  • Mujeeb ur Rehman King Abdullah teaching hospital mansehra
  • Saima BiBi Ayub Medical Teaching Institute, Abbottabad
  • Imran Imran Children Hospital and institute of child Health Lahore
  • Hamayun Anwar Fronteir Medical College Abbottabad
  • Tariq Alam District Headquarter Hospital Tank
  • Khyal Mohammad Ayub Medical Teaching Institute, Abbottabad
Keywords: mid upper arm circumference, weight for height Z-Score, acute malnutrition

Abstract

Background: Malnutrition is a major risk factor for childhood morbidity and mortality. Mid upper arm circumference (MUAC) is a simple and easy to perform method and now it is considered as a surrogate marker of malnutrition. The objective of this study was to assess the utility of MUAC in detecting acute malnutrition in comparison to weight for height Z-score (WHZ) in underweight children below 5 years of age. Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted in Paediatrics Department, Ayub Teaching Hospital, Abbottabad. A total of 200 underweight patients aged 6 months to 5 years were included in the study. Weight for height Z-score and weight for age were determined using WHO child standard growth charts after documenting their growth parameters. The data was analyzed using SPSS-22. Result: Out of 200 patients, 104 (52%) were male and 96 (48%) were female. The mean age was 24.37±16.55 months. Overall 66% children had MUAC below 12.5 Cm while 34% children had MUAC above 12.5 Cm. A total of 116 (58%) children were less than -2SD for WHZ and 84 (42%) were above -2SD WHZ. Conclusion: MUAC is a simple, cheap and easy to perform method to quickly screen children with acute malnutrition and it is more specific then WHZ using the cut-off point of <12.5 Cm. MUAC is more specific in detecting acute malnutrition in younger infants as compared to older children. 

Pak J Physiol 2020;16(1):6–9

Author Biographies

Saima BiBi, Ayub Medical Teaching Institute, Abbottabad

Assistent Professor of Paediatric, Ayub Medical Teaching Institute, Abbottabad

Imran Imran, Children Hospital and institute of child Health Lahore

Senior Registrator paediatric Gestroenterology Department, Children Hospital and institute of child Health Lahore 

Hamayun Anwar, Fronteir Medical College Abbottabad

Senior Registrator of Paediatrics, Fronteir Medical College Abbottabad

Tariq Alam, District Headquarter Hospital Tank

Medical Officer, District Headquarter Hospital Tank

Khyal Mohammad, Ayub Medical Teaching Institute, Abbottabad

Medical Officer, Ayub Medical Teaching Institute, Abbottabad

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Published
2020-03-31
How to Cite
1.
Rehman M, BiBi S, Imran I, Anwar H, Alam T, Mohammad K. Mid upper arm circumference and weight for height z-score as screening tools for acute malnutrition in underweight children &lt;5 years of age. PJP [Internet]. 31Mar.2020 [cited 21Sep.2020];16(1):6-. Available from: https://pjp.pps.org.pk/index.php/PJP/article/view/1094
Section
Original Article