Outcome of severe acute malnutrition in less than six months old infants at Nutrition Stabilization Center, LUMH, Jamshoro, Pakistan

Salma Shaikh, Muhammad Nadeem Chohan, Imran Ahmed, Saleem Shaikh, Mushtaque Ali Shah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To determine the outcome of severe acute malnutrition in <6 months old infants at Nutrition Stabilization Center. Methodology: This cross-sectional study was done at the Pediatric Department, LUMHS from April 2013 to March 2015. The study included 450 young infants (<6 months old) of either gender with weight for length <−3 standard deviation (SD), visible severe wasting and pitting edema over both feet. Infant whose birth weight was below 1.5 at birth and those having congenital abnormalities were excluded. Supplementary suckling technique (SST) was used in mothers, who had history of lactation failure. The outcome parameters were: i) cured: infants who fulfill the discharge criteria, ii) non-responders, infants not responding to nutritional measures while in hospital, iii) death and iv) defaulters: who left the hospital after admission without medical advice before recovery. Results: In 24 months period, 450 children were admitted in NSC with severe acute malnutrition. All children were less than 6 months of age and 23.4% were exclusively breastfed at the time of admission. SST was used in 10.2% infants. Most common diagnosis was acute gastroenteritis in 45%. In this study, 57% infants were cured, while 36% were defaulters. Four percent infants expired and 1% infants were not cured. Conclusion: Most infants were cured and death ratio was minimum with timely detection of malnutrition. Implementation of breast feeding was effective in management. We found default, as a major issue during treatment and that is due to prolonged stay at hospital. Minimum numbers of infants did not respond to treatment, which may be due to associated underlying illness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)986-989
Number of pages4
JournalRawal Medical Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • Young infant
  • breast feeding
  • severe acute malnutrition
  • supplementary suckling technique


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