Role of malnutrition and parasite infections in the spatial variation in children's anaemia risk in northern Angola

Submitted: 16 December 2014
Accepted: 16 December 2014
Published: 1 May 2013
Abstract Views: 3316
PDF: 1515
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Anaemia is known to have an impact on child development and mortality and is a severe public health problem in most countries in sub-Saharan Africa. We investigated the consistency between ecological and individual-level approaches to anaemia mapping by building spatial anaemia models for children aged ‰¤15 years using different modelling approaches. We aimed to (i) quantify the role of malnutrition, malaria, Schistosoma haematobium and soil-transmitted helminths (STHs) in anaemia endemicity; and (ii) develop a high resolution predictive risk map of anaemia for the municipality of Dande in northern Angola. We used parasitological survey data for children aged ‰¤15 years to build Bayesian geostatistical models of malaria (PfPR‰¤15), S. haematobium, Ascaris lumbricoides and Trichuris trichiura and predict small-scale spatial variations in these infections. Malnutrition, PfPR‰¤15, and S. haematobium infections were significantly associated with anaemia risk. An estimated 12.5%, 15.6% and 9.8% of anaemia cases could be averted by treating malnutrition, malaria and S. haematobium, respectively. Spatial clusters of high risk of anaemia (>86%) were identified. Using an individual-level approach to anaemia mapping at a small spatial scale, we found that anaemia in children aged ‰¤15 years is highly heterogeneous and that malnutrition and parasitic infections are important contributors to the spatial variation in anaemia risk. The results presented in this study can help inform the integration of the current provincial malaria control programme with ancillary micronutrient supplementation and control of neglected tropical diseases such as urogenital schistosomiasis and STH infections.

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Soares Magalhães, R. J., Langa, A., Pedro, J. M., Sousa-Figueiredo, J. C., Clements, A. C., & Vaz Nery, S. (2013). Role of malnutrition and parasite infections in the spatial variation in children’s anaemia risk in northern Angola. Geospatial Health, 7(2), 341–354. https://doi.org/10.4081/gh.2013.91

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