Prevalence of Anemia in Children below 5 Years in Al-Mansoor Family Medicine Primary Health Center in Baghdad
Background: Over 30% of the world’s population are anemic, many due to iron
deficiency, and in resource-poor areas, this is frequently exacerbated by infectious
diseases. Malaria, HIV/AIDS, hookworm infestation, schistosomiasis, and other infections
such as tuberculosis are particularly important factors contributing to the high prevalence
of anemia in some areas.
Objectives: To find out the prevalence of anemia among children below 5 years of age
who visited Al-Mansoor health centre for family medicine and associated factors.
Methods: A cross-sectional study by taking children available at the time and their
parents willing to take part in this study, based on convenience. 180 children from 6
months - 5 years of age who visited Al-Mansoor health center for family medicine had
been included in the study. The time period for the study was from September 2010 till
March 2011. The diagnosis of anemia was made according to the level of hemoglobin
which was done in the health center laboratory (Drabkin method for determining
hemoglobin concentration) to every child included in this study. According to WHO the
normal level of hemoglobin from (0.5–5.0 y) of age is 11g/dl or higher. Data had been
collected on Excel program in the computer and statistical analysis had been done to
Results: It was found that out of the 180 children only 56 (31.1%) were anemic and was
distributed as 28 cases of anemia in male comprising (27.7% )of the whole male and 28
cases in the female comprising (35.4%) of the whole female. Anemia was more in children
less than 2 years of age in which anemic cases were 31 (17.2%) while those more than 2
years cases of anemia were 25(13.8%). A high statistical significant difference was
found between education of mothers and anemia and also statistical significant difference
between breast feeding and anemia but no statistical difference between anemia and type
of nutrition (eggs or meats) and number of children in the family
Conclusion: In this study the prevalence of anemia among children below 5 years was
(31.1%) which was close to studies done in Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Eastern Mediterranean
region. Also, it was found that the most important risk factor for anemia is low level of
education of the mothers and other factor was breast feeding.
Keywords: Anemia, Below 5 years, Prevalence, Factors.
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