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Relationship between body size and severity of dengue hemorrhagic fever among children aged 0-14 years.

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Faculty of Public Health, Mahasarakham University, Maha Sarakham, Thailand.


A hospital based case-control study was conducted from October 2002 to November 2003 among children aged 0-14 years at Queen Sirikit National Institute of Child Health (Children's Hospital), Bangkok, Thailand. This study focused on body size and severity of dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) in children. One hundred five patients diagnosed as having DHF grade III or IV were the cases and 105 diagnosed as having DHF grade I or II were controls. They were matched at a ratio of 1:1 by their gender and age (within 5 years). Normal growth charts were used to differentiate child body size into normal, thin and obese. Data were collected using face to face interviews with caregivers, questionnaires, laboratory and physical examination reports as research tools. Multiple logistic regression analysis revealed that only two variables were related to severity of DHF: obesity (OR = 3.00, 95 % CI = 1.20-7.48) and dengue virus type II (OR = 4.94, 95 % CI = 2.57-9.47), respectively. Other variables were childhood factors: duration of breast-feeding, education, and parity; caregivers factors: age, gender, marital status, education, occupation, family income, knowledge of DHF, antipyretic type, treatment before hospitalization, and duration of fever; environmental factors: history of DHF patients in house, house pattern, time from house to hospital, and residence; and etiological factors: type of infection and history of DHF among children. These factors showed no significant association (p > 0.05). This result can be utilized in a preventive and control program, particularly in more aggressive management of overweight children. Health personnel should continue to provide health education, particularly, signs and symptoms of shock, to the community and private sectors. Government and Non-Government Protective Projects in primary schools (5-9 years children) should be continued in the high risk groups.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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