WHO VS. CDC: ANTHROPOMETRIC DISCREPANCY OF PERUVIAN CHILDREN
Coordinator – Victoria Balogh
Group Members: – Jake Shermetaro, Sumaira Hai, Jannet Jones, Zach Reilly
Mentor(s): – Shane Sergent DO, Gary Willyerd DO
Timeslot: 1:00 PM
Location: Lake Huron Room, MSU Union
Category: Epidemiology and Public Health
Abstract: When assessing pediatric patients on the low end of a growth curve, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) has a higher threshold for the definition of “healthy” compared to the World Health Organization (WHO). Studies have shown a discrepancy between the WHO criteria of malnutrition versus the CDC criteria (Phillips, Shulman 2014). Michigan State University College Osteopathic Medicine (MSUCOM) has been collecting pediatric biometrics from various regions throughout Peru since 2011. The purpose of this study was to investigate the aforementioned discrepancy by applying both the WHO and CDC criteria of malnutrition to a population of Peruvian children. It was predicted that more children would be deemed underweight by CDC guidelines. The CDC uses Body Mass Index (BMI) to measure the height to weight ratio and, therefore, the weight status of children. The WHO measures weight status using Z-score: a measure of standard deviation based on height, weight, and age. A total of n=897 Peruvian children over four years were surveyed. Analysis of collected data verified that the CDC criteria categorized more pediatric patients as underweight. This is significant in that the definition of a healthy child varies cross culturally. The WHO standard of healthy pediatric biometrics is meant to be applicable to children with a wide variety of diets, from all socioeconomic backgrounds (Phillips, Shulman 2014). These results need to be taken into account when evaluating pediatric patients in foreign settings and may prove to be clinically relevant in the United States.