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Jornal de Pediatria

Print version ISSN 0021-7557

Abstract

FERRAZ, Ivan S. et al. Zinc serum levels and their association with vitamin A deficiency in preschool children. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2007, vol.83, n.6, pp. 512-517. ISSN 0021-7557.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0021-75572007000800006.

OBJECTIVES: To identify the prevalence of zinc deficiency in a population with high prevalence of vitamin A deficiency; to verify whether zinc deficiency is associated with vitamin A deficiency in the population studied; to verify risk factors for zinc deficiency (sex, age, diarrhea and fever). METHOD: Cross-sectional study of 182 healthy children aged > 24 months and < 72 months. Peripheral blood samples were obtained from fasting children to determine zinc serum levels. Information about presence of diarrhea and/or fever during the 15 days preceding the study was also obtained. Vitamin A deficiency was identified by a serum 30-day dose-response test. RESULTS:Of the children studied, 0.5% (1/182) presented zinc serum levels < 65 µg/dL; however, 74.7% (136/182) of them had vitamin A deficiency. Zinc serum levels were not correlated with retinol serum levels. Zinc serum levels were not changed by previous diarrhea and/or fever. There was no difference in zinc levels between boys and girls. Children aged between > 48 and < 60 months tended to have lower zinc serum levels than children of other ages. CONCLUSION: Zinc deficiency prevalence was low and did not represent a risk factor for vitamin A deficiency. Children aged between > 48 and < 60 months tended to have lower zinc serum levels than children of other ages. Zinc serum levels were not changed by previous diarrhea and/or fever.

Keywords : Zinc; risk factors; vitamin A; vitamin A deficiency; preschool.

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