Maternal anemia is a potential risk factor for anemia in children aged 6-59 months in Southern Africa: a multilevel analysis

Ntenda, P. A.M., Nkoka, O., Bass, P. and Senghore, T. (2018) Maternal anemia is a potential risk factor for anemia in children aged 6-59 months in Southern Africa: a multilevel analysis. BMC Public Health, 18(1), 650. (doi: 10.1186/s12889-018-5568-5) (PMID:29788935) (PMCID:PMC5964691)

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Abstract

Background: The effect of maternal anemia on childhood hemoglobin status has received little attention. Thus, we examined the potential association between maternal anemia and childhood anemia (aged 6–59 months) from selected Southern Africa countries. Methods: A cross-sectional study using nationally representative samples of children aged 6–59 months from the 2010 Malawi, 2011 Mozambique, 2013 Namibia, and 2010–11 Zimbabwe demographic and health surveys (DHS) was conducted. Generalized linear mixed models (GLMMs) were constructed to test the associations between maternal anemia and childhood anemia, controlling for individual and community sociodemographic covariates. Results: The GLMMs showed that anemic mothers had increased odds of having an anemic child in all four countries; adjusted odds ratio (aOR = 1.69 and 95% confidence interval [CI]:1.37–2.13) in Malawi, (aOR = 1.71; 95% CI: 1.37–2.13) in Mozambique, (aOR = 1.55; 95% CI: 1.08–2.22) in Namibia, and (aOR = 1.52; 95% CI: 1.25–1.84) in Zimbabwe. Furthermore, the odds of having an anemic child was higher in communities with a low percentage of anemic mothers (aOR = 1.52; 95% CI: 1.19–1.94) in Mozambique. Conclusions: Despite the long-standing efforts to combat childhood anemia, the burden of this condition is still rampant and remains a significant problem in Southern Africa. Thus, public health strategies aimed at reducing childhood anemia should focus more on addressing infections, and micronutrient deficiencies both at individual and community levels in Southern Africa.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Nkoka, Dr Owen
Authors: Ntenda, P. A.M., Nkoka, O., Bass, P., and Senghore, T.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > Robertson Centre
Journal Name:BMC Public Health
Publisher:BMC
ISSN:1471-2458
ISSN (Online):1471-2458
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2018 The Authors
First Published:First published in BMC Public Health 18(1):650
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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