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Nutrients 2014, 6(12), 5915-5932; doi:10.3390/nu6125915

The Impact of Anemia on Child Mortality: An Updated Review

1
Department of Nutritional Sciences, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802, USA
2
Department of Mental Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA
3
Program in Human Nutrition, Department of International Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 August 2014 / Revised: 21 November 2014 / Accepted: 2 December 2014 / Published: 22 December 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Iron Deficiency: Development, Implications and Treatment)
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Abstract

Iron deficiency anemia and child mortality are public health problems requiring urgent attention. However, the degree to which iron deficiency anemia contributes to child mortality is unknown. Here, we utilized an exhaustive article search and screening process to identify articles containing both anemia and mortality data for children aged 28 days to 12 years. We then estimated the reduction in risk of mortality associated with a 1-g/dL increase in hemoglobin (Hb). Our meta-analysis of nearly 12,000 children from six African countries revealed a combined odds ratio of 0.76 (0.62–0.93), indicating that for each 1-g/dL increase in Hb, the risk of death falls by 24%. The feasibility of a 1-g/dL increase in Hb has been demonstrated via simple iron supplementation strategies. Our finding suggests that ~1.8 million deaths in children aged 28 days to five years could be avoided each year by increasing Hb in these children by 1 g/dL. View Full-Text
Keywords: anemia; iron deficiency; child mortality anemia; iron deficiency; child mortality
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Scott, S.P.; Chen-Edinboro, L.P.; Caulfield, L.E.; Murray-Kolb, L.E. The Impact of Anemia on Child Mortality: An Updated Review. Nutrients 2014, 6, 5915-5932.

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