Diarrhea among children below 5 years of age: A clinical study
Ajay Kumar Shriwastawa
Background: Diarrhea has higher mortality and morbidity rate. It contributed to 9.9% of all deaths every year. The prevalence is more in children below 5 years of age.
Materials & Methods: It included 1050 children below of the age of 5 years of both genders. The confirmation of diarrhea was made if the children presented with three or more loose or watery stools within a 24-hour period. History of number of acute diarrheal defecations per day, and its association with socio demographic, environmental and domestic factors was evaluated.
Results: Out of 1050 children, boys were 550 and girls were 500. The difference was non-significant (P-0.5). Children with 1 year had 70 boys and 55 girls, 2 years had 100 boys and 90 girls, 3 years had 120 boys and 100 girls, 3 years had 120 boys and 100 girls, 4 years had 115 boys and 125 girls and 5 years had 145 boys and 130 girls. The difference was significant (P- 0.01). 410 mothers were illiterate and 640 mothers were literate. The difference was significant (P- 0.01). Water source of children who developed diarrhea had protected water source (340) and unprotected water source (710). The difference was significant (P- 0.01). The type of latrine used by parents was sanitary in 60%, kacha in 35% and others in 5%. Parents 68% parents wash hands before cooking and 32% do not. 55% wash their hand with soap after washing latrine while 45% do not prefer.
Conclusion: Diarrhea is a cause of morbidity and mortality in children especially below 5 years of age. Lack of knowledge of hand washing, use of unclean water, poor sanitation is precipitating factors.