Association of low serum selenium with anemia among adolescent girls living in rural Vietnam

Nguyen Van Nhien, Tomoki Yabutani, Nguyen Cong Khan, Le Nguyen Bao Khanh, Nguyen Xuan Ninh, Le Thi Kim Chung, Junko Motonaka, Yutaka Nakaya
Nutrition 2009, 25 (1): 6-10

OBJECTIVE: We investigated the prevalence of anemia and deficiency in trace elements in adolescent girls living in rural Vietnam.

METHODS: Two hundred forty-five adolescent girls 11-17 y of age from three schools in rural province of Ha Nam, Vietnam, were assessed.

RESULTS: The prevalence of anemia was 20.4%. The incidences of low serum selenium (Se), zinc, and copper in subjects were 15.9%, 26.5%, and 4.1%, respectively. The parameter significantly associated with anemia was the low serum levels of Se and vice versa (odds ratio [OR] 5.36, 95% confidence interval [CI] 2.57-11.18, P < 0.0001). Other risk factors for anemia were a body mass index <17.00 kg/m(2) (OR 2.72, 95% CI 1.37-5.37, P = 0.004) and years of age (OR 1.35, 95% CI 1.14-1.59, P < 0.001). A body mass index <17.00 kg/m(2) (OR 2.65, 95% CI 1.25-5.61, P = 0.011) was also found to be a risk factor for low serum Se.

CONCLUSION: The findings of the present study demonstrate that low serum Se is independently associated with anemia in adolescent girls living in rural Vietnam. Interventions are required to gain insight into the potential role of Se on prevention and control of anemia.

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