South African Journal of Child Health
On-line version ISSN 1994-3032
IGE, O K; OLADOKUN, R E and KIKELOMO, O. Comparative weight gain with ready-to-use therapeutic food in stunted HIV-infected and -uninfected children in a Nigerian Hospital. S. Afr. j. child health [online]. 2014, vol.8, n.3, pp. 104-107. ISSN 1994-3032.
ABSTRACT OBJECTIVE: To bridge the management gap between nutritional rehabilitation for severe acute malnutrition (SAM) and chronic malnutrition, this study investigated to what extent ready-to-use therapeutic food (RUTF) promotes growth in children with long-term nutrition deficit with superimposed SAM. METHODS: A total of 225 (164 HIV-negative and 61 HIV-positive) chronically malnourished children (aged 6 - 60 months) with superimposed SAM were enrolled. Children were provided 92 g packets of an RUTF, Plumpy'Nut, based on an estimated requirement of 200 kcal/kg body weight (BW)/day. Children were fed Plumpy'Nut over a 2-week period, and weight was assessed weekly. Weight gain was compared for HIV-positive children and HIV-negative children. RESULTS: On day 15, the HIV-positive group had a median weight gain of 645 g compared with 670 g in the HIV-negative group (difference 25 g, p=0.784). Similarly, rate of weight gain per kilogram BW per day was comparable for both groups of children (13.2 g/kg BW per day for HIV-negative children v. 11.9 g/kg BW per day for HIV-positive children, p=0.353). On day 15, the proportions of HIV-positive and HIV-negative children who had sustained weight gain were not significantly different. CONCLUSION: Chronically malnourished children with superimposed SAM benefit from the use of RUTF as much as children without chronic nutritional deprivation, regardless of HIV status.