(P14-113-20) Association of Malnutrition Measures with the Risk of Malaria in Sierra Leone
Objectives: This study examined the relationship between malnutrition and malaria among children under five in Sierra Leone. It was predicted that children who displayed anthropometric indicators for malnutrition (stunting, wasting, underweight) would be at a higher risk for contracting malaria than children who did not.
Methods: Data on height, weight, malaria status and use of malaria prevention measures were collected from patients aged 1 month to 60 months at Magbenteh Community Hospital in Makeni, Sierra Leone using a survey in July 2019 (n=153). Multivariate regression models were used in order to determine the association between nutritional status and risk of contracting malaria.
Results: Participants who were underweight were found to be 18.56% more likely to contract malaria (p-value = 0.029). Non-statistically significant positive correlations were also found between stunting and risk of contracting malaria (7.15% more likely, p-value = 0.446) and wasting and risk of contracting malaria (5.82% more likely, p-value = 0.528).
Conclusions: The outcomes of this study would contribute to a better understanding of the risk factors for malaria and the relationship between nutritional status and malaria. Understanding this relationship is essential for developing public health interventions in geographic locations where these conditions co-exist.