• Accuracy of MUAC in the detection of severe wasting with the new WHO growth standards.

      Fernández, M A L; Delchevalerie, P; Van Herp, M; Medical Department, Brussels Operational Center, Doctors Without Borders, Brussels, Belgium. miguel.angel.luque@brussels.msf.org (2010-07)
      OBJECTIVES: The objectives of this study were to estimate the accuracy of using mid-upper-arm circumference (MUAC) measurements to diagnose severe wasting by comparing the new standards from the World Health Organization (WHO) with those from the US National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) and to analyze the age independence of the MUAC cutoff values for both curves. METHODS: We used cross-sectional anthropometric data for 34,937 children between the ages of 6 and 59 months, from 39 nutritional surveys conducted by Doctors Without Borders. Receiver operating characteristic curves were used to examine the accuracy of MUAC diagnoses. MUAC age independence was analyzed with logistic regression models. RESULTS: With the new WHO curve, the performance of MUAC measurements, in terms of sensitivity and specificity, deteriorated. With different cutoff values, however, the WHO standards significantly improved the predictive value of MUAC measurements over the NCHS standards. The sensitivity and specificity of MUAC measurements were the most age independent when the WHO curve, rather than the NCHS curve, was used. CONCLUSIONS: This study confirms the need to change the MUAC cutoff value from <110 mm to <115 mm. This increase of 5 mm produces a large change in sensitivity (from 16% to 25%) with little loss in specificity, improves the probability of diagnosing severe wasting, and reduces false-negative results by 12%. This change is needed to maintain the same diagnostic accuracy as the old curve and to identify the children at greatest risk of death resulting from severe wasting.
    • Effect of Mass Supplementation with Ready-to-Use Supplementary Food during an anticipated nutritional emergency

      Grellety, E; Shepherd, S; Roederer, T; Manzo, M L; Doyon, S; Ategbo, E-A; Grais, R; Epicentre, Paris, France. Emmanuel.GRELLETY@epicentre.msf.org (2012-09-12)
      Previous studies have shown the benefits of ready-to-use supplementary food (RUSF) distribution in reducing the incidence and prevalence of severe acute malnutrition.
    • Effectiveness of ready-to-use therapeutic food compared to a corn/soy-blend-based pre-mix for the treatment of childhood moderate acute malnutrition in Niger.

      Nackers, F; Broillet, F; Oumarou, D; Djibo, A; Gaboulaud, V; Guerin, P J; Rusch, B; Grais, R; Captier, V; Epicentre, Paris, France; Medecins San Frontieres, Switzerland; Ministry of Health, Niger; Hopital Avicenne, Assistance Publique Hopitaux de Paris, France (2010-03-23)
      Standard nutritional treatment of moderate acute malnutrition (MAM) relies on fortified blended flours though their importance to treat this condition is a matter of discussion. With the newly introduced World Health Organization growth standards, more children at an early stage of malnutrition will be treated following the dietary protocols as for severe acute malnutrition, including ready-to-use therapeutic food (RUTF). We compared the effectiveness of RUTF and a corn/soy-blend (CSB)-based pre-mix for the treatment of MAM in the supplementary feeding programmes (SFPs) supported by Médecins Sans Frontières, located in the Zinder region (south of Niger). Children measuring 65 to <110 cm, newly admitted with MAM [weight-for-height (WHM%) between 70% and <80% of the NCHS median] were randomly allocated to receive either RUTF (Plumpy'Nut®, 1000 kcal day(-1)) or a CSB pre-mix (1231 kcal day(-1)). Other interventions were similar in both groups (e.g. weekly family ration and ration at discharge). Children were followed weekly up to recovery (WHM% ≥ 85% for 2 consecutive weeks). In total, 215 children were recruited in the RUTF group and 236 children in the CSB pre-mix group with an overall recovery rate of 79.1 and 64.4%, respectively (p < 0.001). There was no evidence for a difference between death, defaulter and non-responder rates. More transfers to the inpatient Therapeutic Feeding Centre (I-TFC) were observed in the CSB pre-mix group (19.1%) compared to the RUTF group (9.3%) (p = 0.003). The average weight gain up to discharge was 1.08 g kg(-1) day(-1) higher in the RUTF group [95% confidence interval: 0.46-1.70] and the length of stay was 2 weeks shorter in the RUTF group (p < 0.001). For the treatment of childhood MAM in Niger, RUTF resulted in a higher weight gain, a higher recovery rate, a shorter length of stay and a lower transfer rate to the I-TFC compared to a CSB pre-mix. This might have important implications on the efficacy and the quality of SFPs.
    • Efficacy of a Therapeutic Feeding Centre Evaluated During Hospitalization and a Follow-up Period, Tahoua, Niger, 1987-1988.

      Pécoul, B; Soutif, C; Hounkpevi, M; Ducos, M; Epicentre, Paris, France. (Maney Publilshing, 1992)
      Between 1 February 1987 and 31 May 1988 an evaluation of a nutritional rehabilitation centre in Tahoua, Niger was conducted. Among the 381 children admitted to the centre, 61 (16%) had kwashiorkor and 347 (91.3%) were aged between 6 and 29 months. Recovery and death rates were 46.2% and 14.4%, respectively. The median duration of stay until recovery was 21 days. Sixty-two per cent of deaths occurred during the 1st week of hospitalization. Three risk factors for death were identified by the study: patients with kwashiorkor with a weight/height (W/H) less than -3 SD, those with marasmus with a W/H less than -5 SD, and those dehydrated with marasmus. Among children included in the follow-up study after leaving the centre, the risk of dying during the follow-up period among children who absconded was 7.1 times higher than the risk observed among children who recovered. Among the children who recovered, no relapse was observed 3-18 months after they left the centre. This investigation indicates the importance of intensive therapeutic feeding centres in areas with a high prevalence of malnutrition.