Severe pneumonia in children and its association with feeding practice

MM Rahman1, M Hussain2, MAA Mamun3, R Mobarak4, MS Hoque5

Abstract
Background: Pneumonia is currently the leading cause of morbidity, hospitalization
and death in under-five children in Bangladesh. Feeding practice may play a major
role in developing severe pneumonia.
Objective: The objective of the study was to find out any association between feeding
practice and pneumonia in under 5 children.
Methodology: It was a prospective study done among 152 children attending the
Outpatient Department of Dhaka Shishu Hospital. The study was done from 1 July
1999 to 31 December 2000. Patients (100) with severe pneumonia were selected on
the basis of WHO criteria of chest indrawing and other 52 patients were selected
randomly for comparison from children who came with cold and cough and other
symptoms but not suffering from severe pneumonia.

Results: Out of 152 patients 52 % of them were breast-fed and 48% were non-breast
fed. Children who were not breast-fed were found more prone to develop severe
pneumonia (78.1%) than those who were breast-fed (54.4%). There was strong
association between non breast-fed children and development of pneumonia (p= .002).
No statistically significant difference was found between mean duration of breast
feeding, colostrum, bottle feeding and time of weaning (p>0.05).
Conclusion: Non breast-fed children are more prone to develop severe pneumonia.

Key words: Feeding practice, severe pneumonia, under 5 children

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