J Med Assoc Thai 1997; 80 (3):139

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The Prevalence of Inadequate Vitamin A Nutriture in Preschool Children of North and Northeast Thailand
Wanaratna L Mail, Sinawat S , Thaineua V

Previous surveys have suggested that preschool children in the North and Northeast of
Thailand are at risk of inadequate vitamin A nutriture. Therefore, vitamin A status was assessed
in 996 children aged 2-6 years in the North and Northeast Thailand during the dry (Feb.-April)
and rainy (Sept.-Nov.) seasons. Approximately I per cent of samples during both periods exhibited
serum retinol concentrations below 10 mcg/dl with means (± SD) concentration of 29±9.8
mcg/dl in the dry season and 37±15.4 mcg/dl in the rainy season. About one fifth of the studied
children showed abnormal CIC and depleted liver stores (RDR > 20% ). High risk areas were
ranked and corresponded well by these 2 indicators. Therefore, it is concluded that the magnitude
of the problem estimated by RDR and CIC are a more precise measurement of marginal vitamin
A status than serum vitamin A level alone and about one-fifth of preschool children in the North
and Northeast regions of Thailand experience subclinical vitamin A deficiency.

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