Nutritional Status of Children Admitted for Diarrhoeal Diseases in a Referral Hospital in Western Kenya


Objectives: To determine the prevalence of malnutrition among children admitted with acute diarrhoea disease at Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital and to establish the effect of malnutrition on duration of hospital stay. Design: Prospective observational study. Setting: Paediatric wards of Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital, Eldoret, Kenya Subjects: A total of 191 children aged 6 and 59 months admitted with acute diarrhoea disease, without chronic co-morbidities or visible severe malnutrition, were systematically enrolled into the study between November 2011 and March 2012. Outcome Measures: Nutritional status based on WHO WHZ scores taken at admission and duration of hospital stay. Results: The mean age was 13.2 months with a male to female sex ratio of 1.16:1. Of all the children seen with acute diarrhoeal diseases, 43.9% had acute malnutrition (<-2 WHZ score), with 12% being severely malnourished (<-3 Z score). Average duration of hospital stay was 3.36 (SD=1.54) days. Among those with malnutrition the average duration of stay was 3.39 (SD=1.48) days while for those without malnutrition it was 3.21(SD=1.20) days, which was not statistically different. No death was reported. WHO weight for Height Z scores picked12% of severe form of malnutrition missed out by Welcome Trust classification (weight for age). Conclusion: Routine anthrometry including weight for height identifies more children with malnutrition in acute diarrhoeal diseases. Presence of malnutrition did not affect durationof the hospital stay.




Nutritional status, children admitted diarrhoeal diseases, referral hospitals, western Kenya


Marete, I., Simba, J., Gisore, P., Tenge, C., Bosire, D., Mwangi, A., & Esamai, F. (2013). Nutritional status of children admitted for diarrhoeal diseases in a referral hospital in western Kenya. East African Medical Journal, 90(7), 222-225.