Application of the world health organization child growth standards for growth evaluation in children from two kindergartens in međimurje county

The World Health Organization new growth standards have been developed using a methodology designed to determine the optimum rate of child growth and development. To achieve this goal, breastfed children living in a favorable socioeconomic environment, whose mothers do not smoke, were used as the baseline population. The resulting standard curves of growth have been issued for preschool children and reference curves established for school children. After their publication in December 2006, these standards have been accepted by many countries, while some other reference values have remained in use in only a few countries. With the aim of introducing the World Health Organization growth standards in our country, a small research was conducted in Međimurje County. Forty-two Romany children and 44 age-matched children of the majority population were included and measured as recommended by the World Health Organization. Romany children were found to significantly lag behind the majority population children both in body weight and height. Our data showed usefulness of the new standard growth curve in growth monitoring of preschool children. Also, study results showed the Romany children of kindergarten age to significantly lag in growth and body mass behind the new standard growth curve. According to the World Health Organization weight-for-age values, the majority population children showed 16% overweight and 15% obesity.

Category: Original scientific paper
Volume: Vol. 56, No 3, july - september 2012
Authors: M. Hegeduš-Jungvirth, I. Ključarić, J. Grgurić, E. Glavaš
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