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Stunting is a major health problem in low-income countries. We aimed to describe the implementation of a lipid-based nutrient supplement (LNS) program in a rural neighborhood in Cambodia and to assess its impact on statural growth.
This was a before–after comparative study. The program was promoted by the Pédiatres du Monde (PDM) organization between 2011 and 2019 in six villages in a rural area in Cambodia. The supplementation program consisted of daily administration of LNS during the third semester of pregnancy for the mothers and then between 6 and 24 months of age for the toddlers. Anthropometric data of the children were recorded during PDM visits before and after the program implementation, which allowed us to compare child growth in the two groups: control and intervention groups. Primary outcome was height-for-age between 24 and 35 months of age.
Overall, 198 data were collected for children between 24 and 35 months of age in the control group. A total of 347 pregnant women were enrolled in the intervention phase. A total of 188 data were collected for children between 24 and 35 months of age in the intervention group. The mean height-for-age z-score in the population receiving LNS was higher than in the control group (−1.14 vs. −1.60, p < 0.001). There was no significant difference between the two groups regarding the weight-for-height z-score (WHZ; −1.11 vs. −1.26, p = 0.18) and children in the intervention group had a higher middle upper-arm circumference z-score (MUACZ; −0.75 vs.. −1.1, p < 0.001).
LNS supplementation significantly and increased the HAZ between 24 and 35 months of age. However, the fight against malnutrition is complex and needs intervention on multiple levels.Le texte complet de cet article est disponible en PDF.
Keywords : Chronic malnutrition, Stunting, Lipid-based nutrient supplement, Evaluation study, Rural population