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Original Articles

Iron status and prevalence of anaemia among school children in the Jaffna district

Authors:

Manoji Gitanjali Sathiadas ,

University of Jaffna, Sri Lanka, LK
About Manoji
University of Jaffna, Sri Lanka
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Vithuran Saravanabavananthan,

University of Jaffna, Sri Lanka, LK
About Vithuran
University of Jaffna, Sri Lanka
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Kasthuri Thangarajah,

University of Jaffna, Sri Lanka, LK
About Kasthuri
University of Jaffna, Sri Lanka
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Pujitha Wickramasinghe

University of Colombo, Sri Lanka, LK
About Pujitha

University of Colombo, Sri Lanka

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Abstract

Introduction: The National Nutrition and Micronutrient Survey of 2012 reported that anaemia was seen in 15% of Sri Lankan children between 6 months and 5 years of age.

Objectives: To identify the prevalence of anaemia and the impact of the intervention programmes among 6-16 year old children in the Jaffna District. 

Method: A community based cross sectional study was carried out using multistage stratified proportionate cluster sampling technique among children attending schools in the Jaffna district. A pre-tested questionnaire was used to collect data and a blood sample was obtained for serum ferritin and HS-CRP levels. Haemoglobin was checked using the Haemacue apparatus on the spot. WHO definitions and cut off values were used.

Results: A total of 1163 school students between 6-16 years were screened (male: female ratio 1:1.02). Mean age was 12.33 ±3.1 years. Mean haemoglobin was 12.31±1.51g/dl and mean ferritin was 21.31ng/ml 95%CI 18.99-23.63 respectively. The prevalence of anaemia was 27.9% (n=324), prevalence of iron deficiency anaemia was 16.8. Females had higher prevalence (30.6%) of anaemia when compared to males (25%) (p <0.01). Prevalence of iron deficiency was 52% adjusted after excluding population with high CRP. Haemoglobin level of study population significantly correlated with height (r-0.243, p<0.01), weight (r-0.256, p<0.01) and BMI (r-0.2, p<0.01). Prevalence of anaemia was significantly higher in children aged 12-16yrs (p<0.001) and among children from Thenmaradchi zone (p<0.003)

Conclusions: Of the 6-16 year old school children in the Jaffna educational zones, more than a fourth have anaemia of which iron deficiency contributes to almost 60%.  More than half of this population has iron deficiency with the highest prevalence in Thenmaradchchi zone.

Sri Lanka Journal of Child Health, 2019; 48(3): 194-200

How to Cite: Sathiadas, M.G., Saravanabavananthan, V., Thangarajah, K. and Wickramasinghe, P., 2019. Iron status and prevalence of anaemia among school children in the Jaffna district. Sri Lanka Journal of Child Health, 48(3), pp.194–200. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljch.v48i3.8752
Published on 05 Sep 2019.
Peer Reviewed

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