Determinants of Stunting, Wasting, and Anemia in Guinean Preschool-Age Children: An Analysis of DHS Data From 1999, 2005, and 2012

Food Nutr Bull. 2018 Mar;39(1):39-53. doi: 10.1177/0379572117743004. Epub 2018 Jan 30.


Wasting, stunting, and anemia are persistent and important forms of malnutrition in preschool-age children in the less developed world, in particular the Republic of Guinea, which was the site of a large outbreak of Ebola virus disease in 2014 to 2015. We analyzed data from 3 Demographic and Health Surveys done in Guinea in 1999, 2005, and 2012 to identify possible determinants of wasting, stunting, and anemia. All analyses, both bivariate and multivariate, were carried out separately for each of 3 age groups: less than 6 months, 6 to 23 months, and 24 to 59 months. Variables found statistically significantly associated with stunting, wasting, or anemia in bivariate analysis were placed in an age-specific logistic regression model for that outcome. Overall, anthropometric indices were available for 9228 children and hemoglobin concentrations were available for 5681 children. Logistic regression found relatively few variables associated with nutrition outcomes in children younger than 6 months. More variables were associated with nutrition outcomes in children aged 6 to 23 months. Such variables measured a wide variety of conditions, including estimated birth size, child health and nutritional status, child caring practices, mother's nutritional and health status, and household water source and sanitation. A similarly broad range of variables was statistically significantly associated with one or more nutrition outcomes in children aged 24 to 59 months. Few of the standard infant and young child feeding indicators were associated with any nutrition outcome. Improvement in the nutritional status of young children in Guinea may require a broad range of nutrition and health interventions.

Keywords: anemia; child nutrition; stunting; sub-Saharan Africa; wasting.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anemia, Iron-Deficiency / epidemiology*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Family Characteristics
  • Female
  • Growth Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Guinea / epidemiology
  • Health Status
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Malnutrition / epidemiology*
  • Nutritional Status
  • Prevalence
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Wasting Syndrome / epidemiology*