Anaemia, iron deficiency and vitamin A status among school-aged children in rural Kazakhstan

Masahiro Hashizume, Momoko Chiba, Atsuko Shinohara, Shigehiro Iwabuchi, Satoshi Sasaki, Taeko Shimoda, Osamu Kunii, Wathan Caypil, Damir Dauletbaev, Akmaral Alnazarova
Public Health Nutrition 2005, 8 (6): 564-71

OBJECTIVES: To investigate the prevalence of anaemia and iron deficiency and vitamin A status among school-aged children in rural Kazakhstan and identify factors associated with anaemia in this population.

DESIGN: A cross-sectional design.

SETTING: School-aged children in rural Kazakhstan.

SUBJECTS: Socio-economic and anthropometric information was collected from 159 school-aged children living in the Kzyl-Orda region of Kazakhstan. Blood samples were collected and the concentrations of haemoglobin (Hb), serum iron, serum ferritin (SF), erythrocyte protoporphyrin (EP), serum retinol and beta-carotene, total iron binding capacity (TIBC), transferrin saturation (TS) and other haematological indices were measured.

RESULTS: Among the 159 children, the prevalence of anaemia and iron deficiency defined by the multiple criteria model (SF, TS and EP) was 27% and 13%, respectively. Nine per cent had iron-deficiency anaemia and 21% had serum retinol value < 1.05 micromol l(-1). Mean SF and serum iron concentrations and TS were significantly lower in anaemic children than in their non-anaemic peers, while TIBC and EP were significantly higher in children with anaemia. Hb was significantly correlated with serum iron and retinol concentrations. Serum retinol and SF concentrations and mean corpuscular volume were significantly correlated with Hb by multiple regression analysis.

CONCLUSIONS: Anaemia among school-aged children in rural Kazakhstan appears to be related to iron indices and vitamin A status.

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