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Stunting, overweight and child development impairment go hand in hand as key problems of early infancy: Uruguayan case



Stunting, overweight and child development impairment go hand in hand as key problems of early infancy: Uruguayan case



Early Human Development 88(9): 747-751



Stunting, overweight and child development impairment are key problems affecting early infancy and have short and long-term consequences on academic performance, social competence and adult health. The aim of this paper is to identify linkages and factors that may simultaneously contribute to these problems. A cross sectional study. 2,046 children under 5 years in Canelones, Uruguay. For simultaneous assessment of the relationship between stunting, overweight and child development impairment we used multiple logistic regression analyses. We included children, household, maternal and paternal variables as confounder factors. To give the strength of association we performed odds ratios (OR). A significant OR was defined as upper and lower 95% confidence limits not containing the value of one. Significance level was <0.05. Low birthweight was a risk for stunting OR: 3.2 (1.8-5.6) and for reduced head circumference growth OR: 3.9 (1.9-8.0); infants with reduced head circumference had an increased chance of delayed psychomotor development OR: 2.4 (1.17-5.07) and of being stunted OR: 3.2 (1.7-6.3); stunted infants had almost three times risk of being overweight OR: 2.7 (1.8-4.1). Maternal stature <160 cm, low BMI, low education and poverty were also predictor for stunting. Obese mother, maternal stature >160 cm and maternal smoking increased chance of overweight. Some maternal behaviors, such as mother not used to singing songs and maternal smoking increased the likelihood of delaying psychomotor development. The close linkages between stunting, being overweight and child development impairment suggest they should be targeted together: they coexist in the same infants and predict each other.

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Accession: 055982561

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PMID: 22560815

DOI: 10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2012.04.002


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