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Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso

Hess S.Y.,University of California at Davis | Abbeddou S.,University of California at Davis | Jimenez E.Y.,University of New Mexico | Some J.W.,University of California at Davis | And 6 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2015

Small-quantity lipid-based nutrient supplements (SQ-LNS) are promising home fortification products, but the optimal zinc level needed to improve growth and reduce morbidity is uncertain. We aimed to assess the impact of providing SQ-LNS with varied amounts of zinc, along with illness treatment, on zinc-related outcomes compared with standard care. In a placebocontrolled, cluster-randomized trial, 34 communities were stratified to intervention (IC) or nonintervention cohorts (NIC). 2435 eligible IC children were randomly assigned to one of four groups:1) SQ-LNS without zinc, placebo tablet; 2) SQ-LNS containing 5mg zinc, placebo tablet; 3) SQ-LNS containing 10mg zinc, placebo tablet; or 4) SQ-LNS without zinc and 5mg zinc tablet from 9-18 months of age. During weekly morbidity surveillance, oral rehydration salts were provided for reported diarrhea and antimalarial therapy for confirmed malaria. Children in NIC (n = 785) did not receive SQ-LNS, tablets, illness surveillance or treatment. At 9 and 18 months, length, weight and hemoglobin were measured in all children. Reported adherence was 97±6% for SQ-LNS and tablets. Mean baseline hemoglobin was 89±15g/L. At 18 months, change in hemoglobin was greater in IC than NIC (+8vs-1g/L, p<0.0001),but 79. 1 % of IC were still anemic (vs. 91.1% in NIC). Final plasma zinc concentration did not differ by group. During the 9-month observation period, the incidence of diarrhea was 1.10±1.03 and of malaria 0.54±0.50 episodes per 100 child-days, and did not differ by group. Length at 18 months was significantly greater in IC compared to NIC (77.7±3.0 vs. 76.9±3.4cm; p<0.001) and stunting prevalence was significantly lower in IC (29.3%) than NIC (39.3%; p<0.0001), but did not differ by intervention group within IC. Wasting prevalence was also significantly lower in IC (8.7%) than in NIC (13.5%; p = 0.0003). Providing SQ-LNS daily with or without zinc, along with malaria and diarrhea treatment, significantly increased growth and reduced stunting, wasting and anemia prevalence in young children. Copyright: © 2015 Hess et al.

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