Clinico-epidemiological profile and outcome of children with severe acute malnutrition


  • Irfan B. Bhat Department of Pediatrics, GMC Srinagar, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India
  • Muzafar Jan Department of Pediatrics, GMC Srinagar, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India
  • Abdus S. Bhat Department of Pediatrics, GMC Srinagar, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India



Severe acute malnutrition, Outcome, Nutritional rehabilitation centre


Background: Severe acute malnutrition is a significant crisis which can cause great morbidity and mortality in children. The aim of this study was to study the clinic-epidemiological profile and outcome of these children in a tertiary care hospital.

Methods: The study was an observational prospective study conducted from November 2018 to April 2020. A total of 61 patients were enrolled in our study. All Children were managed in nutritional rehabilitation centre as per WHO protocol.

Results: Male to female ratio was 1:1.6. Majority of patients were of age less the 2 years (83.4%) and were of birth order 3 or more (65.5%). The mean age of presentation was 12.016±7.72 months. Mean duration of exclusively breast feeding in our study was 3.643±1.81 months. Weight-for-height <-3 SD was the most commonly used diagnostic criteria. 67.2% patients recovered completely, 24.6% patients recovered partially and 8.2% patients were defaulters. Mean duration of hospital stay of patients in our study was 12.918±7.9735 days and average weight gain in our study was 8.808±3.7312 g/kg/day. The most common presenting symptom in our study was fever (45.9%). The most common co-morbidity in our study was bronchopneumonia (27.9%).

Conclusions: The problem of severe malnutrition is multi-dimensional and inter-generational in nature. Most of patients come to hospital with complaints like fever, cough, loose motions, vomiting and are then discovered as patients of severe acute malnutrition. Thus, screening the patients who report to hospital with various complaints can help in early detection and proper rehabilitation. NRCs provide live-saving care for children with SAM as demonstrated by the high survival rates in this study.


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