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Anemia and intestinal parasitic infections among children in jimma university specialized hospital, southwest ethiopia: a cross sectional study

Authors: Lealem Gedefaw, Endalew Zemene, Getnet Tesfaw, Mulatu Gashaw, Netsanet Fentahun, Alemayehu Reta, Daniel Yilma
Int J Biol Med Res. 2015; 6(2): 4907-4911  |  PDF File


Background: Anemia is a significant public health problem in developing countries especially in children, where soil-transmitted helminthes are also rampant. In school-age children, anemia is associated with increased mortality, growth retardation, poor cognitive abilities, reduced school performance, and impaired immune system. Hence, monitoring of the burden of anemia in children is indispensable. Objective: This study is aimed at determining prevalence of anemia and assessing associated risk factors among children visiting Jimma University Specialized Hospital (JUSH) pediatric outpatient department. Methods: A facility-based cross sectional study was conducted involving 369 children visiting JUSH from December2012 to February2013. Structured questionnaire was used to gather demographic profile the children and data on risk factors of anemia. Moreover, venous blood and stool specimens were collected for hematological and parasitological investigations, respectively. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 16. Results: Overall, prevalence of anemia was 33.3% and 17.1% of the children had intestinal parasitic infection (IPIs). After a multivariate logistic regression, younger age (AOR = 3.25, 95%CI = 1.44 - 7.35), male gender (AOR = 2.44, 95%CI = 1.39-4.31), children with illiterate mothers (AOR = 2.38, 95%CI = 1.27 - 4.46), IPIs (AOR = 3.05, 95%CI = 1.56 - 5.95), being stunted (AOR = 3.29, 95%CI = 1.77 - 6.11) and underweight (AOR = 3.63, 95%CI = 1.97 - 6.69) were identified as independent predictors of anemia in the study participants. Conclusion: This study revealed high prevalence of anemia among the children. Regular screening of children for anemia is recommended. Moreover, creating awareness on the predisposing factors is essential to prevent the long-term tragic outcomes of anemia in the children.