Giardiasis as a predictor of childhood malnutrition in Orang Asli children in Malaysia

Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 2005 Sep;99(9):686-91. doi: 10.1016/j.trstmh.2005.02.006.


A cross-sectional study to examine the association of giardiasis with protein-energy malnutrition, vitamin A deficiency and iron deficiency anaemia was conducted among Orang Asli children in Selangor, Malaysia. A total of 281 children aged 2-15 years were studied. The data were collected using structured questionnaires, anthropometric measurements and laboratory analysis of blood and faecal samples. The results showed that 24.9% of the children were infected with Giardia duodenalis, while 56.5, 61.3 and 15.1% had significant underweight, stunting and wasting, respectively. Giardiasis was statistically identified as a strong predictor of significant wasting in this study population.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Anemia, Iron-Deficiency / epidemiology*
  • Anemia, Iron-Deficiency / parasitology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Giardiasis / epidemiology*
  • Humans
  • Malaysia / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Prevalence
  • Protein-Energy Malnutrition / epidemiology*
  • Protein-Energy Malnutrition / parasitology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Vitamin A Deficiency / epidemiology*
  • Vitamin A Deficiency / parasitology