Assessment of Vitamin A Status of Under-Five Children in Orphanages of Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Nigeria

Steve-Edemba Chizoba, L.


Assessment of vitamin a status of under-five children in orphanages of federal capital territory, Abuja, Nigeria was conducted. The objective of the study was to assess the vitamin A status of the under-five children in the orphanages of Federal Capital Territory using biochemical method and determine the relationship between the dietary intakes vitamin A with the biochemical status of the under-five children. A cross sectional descriptive study was carried out on 200 under-five orphans, between 0-5 years living in ten orphanages in Abuja, Nigeria. Blood samples were analysed to determine the Vitamin A status of the under-five children also questionnaires were used to collect information on feeding practices of the children. The values obtained from nutrient intakes were compared with FAO/WHO recommended nutrients intake. Biochemical results from this study, revealed high prevalence of vitamin A deficiency (VAD) (20.0%) among the under-five children. Majority (80.0%) of the children had normal vitamin A status, while 20.0% had marginal vitamin A deficiency (serum retinol concentration < 20 ug/dl). The prevalence of VAD was common in children aged 7-24 months. However, age of children did not have an effect on vitamin A status (?2 = 1.145; df=2, P=0.642). Correlation between dietary intake vitamin A and biochemical status of the children revealed that adequate dietary adequate dietary vitamin A intake was significant (P<0.05) with serum retinol. There is low caregiver to child ratio (1:5) and low socio-economic status. VAD is of public health importance in Nigeria therefore more concerted effort by all the stakeholders should be put in place to minimize it menace.

Keywords: Assessment, Vitamin A Status, Under-Five Children, Orphanages

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3208 ISSN (Online)2225-093X

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