Ali Ahmad, Parvez I Paracha, Ziaud Din.
Iodine status in children aged 8-11 year in Kabul, Afghanistan.
Pak J Med Res Jan ;44(3):105-11.
Aims: To assess the prevalence of clinical and sub-clinical iodine deficiency in children. and also determine the iodine content of household salt. Design: A cross sectional school-based study was conducted on children aged between 8-11 year in two rural and two urban areas of Kabul. Patients and Methods: Four hundred children were enrolled for the study and were examined for clinical and sub-clinical iodine deficiency. Children were also asked to bring a teaspoon of salt from their homes which was tested by rapid iodine spot test to determine the type of salt used. Results: About 12% of the children had grade-I goiter. The prevalence of goiter was higher in rural children (16.5%) than that of the urban children (7.5%). Similarly, the prevalence of goiter was higher in girls (15.2%) than in the boys (10.5%). The prevalence of sub-clinical iodine deficiency assessed by urinary iodine levels revealed that 68.3% of the children had mild to severe iodine deficiency. The children from rural areas had higher prevalence of sub-clinical iodine deficiency (74.7%) than that of the urban areas (61.5%). Similarly, girls had higher prevalence of sub-clinical iodine deficiency (73.2%) than boys (66.4%). The semi-quantitative salt analysis results by iodine spot test showed that 65.3% of the households were consuming non-iodized salt while 34.7% were consuming salt with varying amount of iodine. Conclusion: The clinical, sub-clinical results and type of salt consumed at the household level suggest that iodine deficiency is prevalent at an alarming rate in Kabul requiring appropriate interventions to reduce and control iodine deficiency.
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