Open Access Daily use of Sprinkles micronutrient powder for 2 months reduces anemia among children 6 to 36 months of age in the Kyrgyz Republic: A cluster-randomized trial

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Background. Iron-deficiency anemia is widespread among young children in the Kyrgyz Republic, and there is an urgent need to identify an effective intervention to address this significant public health problem.

Objective. To test the effectiveness of a 2-month intervention with daily home fortification of complementary food using micronutrient powder (Sprinkles) in reducing anemia among children 6 to 36 months of age in the Kyrgyz Republic.

Methods. In this cluster-randomized, community-based effectiveness trial conducted in three regions of the Kyrgyz Republic, 24 clusters of children aged 6 to 36 months were randomly assigned to two groups. The intervention group (12 clusters, n = 1,103) received 60 sachets of micronutrient powder (12.5 mg elemental iron), which were taken as one sachet daily for 2 months. The control group (12 clusters, n = 1,090) did not receive micronutrient powder until after the study period. Blood hemoglobin concentration was assessed at the start and end of the intervention.

Results. From baseline to follow-up, the mean hemoglobin concentration in the intervention group increased by 7 g/L, whereas it decreased by 2 g/L in the control group (p < .001). The prevalence of anemia (hemoglobin < 110 g/L) in the intervention group decreased from 72% at baseline to 52% at follow-up, whereas it increased from 72% to 75% in the control group (p < .001). Compliance with the intervention was high, with children consuming on average 45 of the 60 sachets given.

Conclusions. A course of 60 Sprinkles micronutrient powder sachets taken daily for 2 months is effective in improving hemoglobin levels and reducing the prevalence of anemia among young children in the Kyrgyz Republic.


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2010

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  • Established in 1978, the Food and Nutrition Bulletin (FNB) is a peer-reviewed journal published quarterly by the Nevin Scrimshaw International Nutrition Foundation.

    The focus of the journal is to highlight original scientific articles on nutrition research, policy analyses, and state-of-the-art summaries relating to multidisciplinary efforts to alleviate the problems of hunger and malnutrition in the developing world.

    Food and Nutrition Bulletin's 2012 Impact Factor: 2.106

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