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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 27  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 209-213

The Nutritional Status of Children with Asthma and Its Relationship with Acute Exacerbations

1 Department of Paediatrics, Jos University Teaching Hospital, Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria
2 Department of Paediatrics, Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Bayero University Kano, Kano State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Helen O Akhiwu
Department of Paediatrics, Jos University Teaching Hospital, Lamingo Permanent Site, Jos, Plateau State
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijmh.IJMH_47_21

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Background: Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the airways. There is increasing international interests in the role of nutrition in asthma control. Objectives: This study was carried out to determine the nutritional status of children with asthma using the World Health Organization (WHO) growth reference charts for height, weight, and body mass index (BMI) for age and to determine the relationship if any between nutritional status and frequency of acute asthmatic exacerbations. Materials and Methods: It was a descriptive cross-sectional study of children aged 6–17 years with asthma attending the pediatric respiratory clinic of a tertiary hospital from October 2017 to March 2019. All the values obtained were interpreted using the WHO reference growth charts z-scores. Results: A total of 71 children participated in the study. The study showed that 94% of the children with asthma were of normal height with 2.6% stunted and 2.6% severely stunted. There was no significant association between the height and the frequency of acute exacerbation. About 65% of the children had normal BMI. Those that were wasted/severely wasted were 19.7%, whereas 15.5% were overweight/at risk of overweight. There was no significant association between the BMI and the frequency of acute exacerbations (P > 0.05). The odds of having more frequent exacerbations in children with either above normal or below normal BMI were 1.05 (0.11–10.44) and 0.81 (0.08–7.88), respectively. Conclusion: Majority of the children with asthma were of normal height. Despite the fact that there were more children who were wasted/severely wasted than overweight/risk of overweight, these findings were not significantly associated with more frequent acute exacerbations.

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