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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 129-133

Socio-demographic and immunization characteristics of siblings of children with severe acute malnutrition attending paediatric nutrition clinic of Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Shika, Zaria

1 Department of Paediatrics, ABU/ABUTH Zaria, Jos, Nigeria
2 Department of Paediatrics, ABU Zaria, Jos, Nigeria
3 Department of Paediatrics, BUK/AKTH Kano, Jos, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Sani M Mado
Department of Paediatrics, ABU/ABUTH Zaria, Jos
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ssajm.ssajm_15_19

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Introduction: Severe acute malnutrition (SAM) is a disease of the developing world. Poverty and famine have escalated its prevalence. In Nigeria, the Boko Haram menace has resulted in an upsurge of internally displaced persons in need of food and shelter. It is estimated that about 16 million children are affected by malnutrition worldwide and accounts for two million deaths worldwide annually. Evidence suggests incomplete vaccination predisposes to malnutrition and its unwanted sequelae. Anecdotal findings show that most siblings of children with SAM were incompletely vaccinated and hence are at risk of SAM. The study thus aimed at assessing their socio demographic characteristics and immunization to document their vulnerability to development of SAM. Materials and Methods: This was a cross-sectional study of socio-demographic characteristics and immunization status of siblings of children with SAM being rehabilitated in the Paediatric nutrition clinic of Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital Shika Zaria, between March 2009 and September 2014. The information was directly obtained from the mothers of the children as they presented to the clinic and then recorded into a structured questionnaire. Results: The socio-demographic characteristics of 229 parents and immunization status of siblings of children with SAM were reviewed. Most family settings were monogamous (54.2%) and the majority of the fathers were semi-skilled labourers (26.2%). Only 76 (33.2%) of the mothers had some form of formal education while 153 (66.8%) were not formally educated. The majority of the subjects received BCG vaccine but only 56% and 55.5% of the subjects completed their DPT3 and oral polio 3 vaccinations respectively. Conclusion: The study showed that fathers of siblings of children with SAM were semi-skilled labourers while their mothers were predominantly stay at home and not formally educated with limited source of income. Furthermore, BCG vaccination was the most commonly received vaccine and it is recommended that concerted effort should be made towards improving vaccine delivery among siblings of children with SAM. Adult literacy and empowerment of mothers may help achieve improved immunization of siblings of children with SAM.

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