Stunting at birth: recognition of early-life linear growth failure in the western highlands of Guatemala.

N.W, Solomons, M. Vossenaar, A.M. Chomat, C.M. Doak, K.G. Koski, M.E. Scott

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Objective: Measurements of length at birth, or in the neonatal period, are challenging to obtain and often discounted for lack of validity. Hence, classical 'under-5' stunting rates have been derived from surveys on children from 6 to 59 months of age. Guatemala has a high prevalence of stunting (49·8 %), but the age of onset of growth failure is not clearly defined. The objective of the study was to assess length-for-age within the first 1·5 months of life among Guatemalan infants. Design: As part of a cross-sectional observational study, supine length was measured in young infants. Mothers' height was measured. Length-for-age Z-scores (HAZ) were generated and stunting was defined as HAZ <-2 using WHO growth standards. Setting: Eight rural, indigenous Mam-Mayan villages (n 200, 100 % of Mayan indigenous origin) and an urban clinic of Quetzaltenango (n 106, 27 % of Mayan indigenous origin), Guatemala. Subjects: Three hundred and six newborns with a median age of 19 d. Results: The median rural HAZ was -1·56 and prevalence of stunting was 38 %; the respective urban values were -1·41 and 25 %. Linear regression revealed no relationship between infant age and HAZ (r=0·101, r
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1737-1745
JournalPublic Health Nutrition
Volume18
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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