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Micronutrient supplements for children after deworming

By Andrew Hall

Abstract

The availability of a few inexpensive, single dose drugs to treat soil-transmitted\ud helminths and schistosomiasis offers the potential to reduce a considerable\ud burden of acute disease, especially among children sub-Saharan Africa. These\ud treatments are being promoted as "rapid impact interventions" However, if\ud helminth infections cause underweight, stunting, anaemia and impaired mental\ud development in children, how will removing worms alone lead to recovery\ud without treating the underlying deficits that have been caused or made worse by\ud helminth disease? Energy, protein and micronutrients are required by children\ud who are underweight or who have stunted growth; children who are anaemic\ud will require iron and other micronutrients for haemopoiesis; and children who\ud have lost education will need remedial teaching. Treating neglected worm\ud diseases is an essential first step to good health, but anthelmintic drugs need to\ud be integrated with simple and inexpensive nutritional interventions such as\ud micronutrient supplements to promote recovery and have a rapid effect

Topics: UOW2
OAI identifier: oai:westminsterresearch.wmin.ac.uk:3791
Provided by: WestminsterResearch

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