Maternal Nutrition and Pregnancy Outcomes
Anthropometric Assessment
PAHO Scientific Publication No 529
Krasovec, K., Anderson, M.A.
PAHO
ISBN-13    9789275115299 ISBN-10    927511529X
Order Number    16100529   
Price    CHF    50.00 / US$    60.00 Developing countries:    CHF    35.00
English     1991        224   pages
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Summary
A state-of-the-art report on the use of simple, inexpensive anthropometric indicators to measure the nutritional status of pregnant women, predict pregnancy outcome, and identify women at risk. Emphasis is placed on measurements and reference values that are simple and sensitive, have high predictive value, require inexpensive equipment, and are suitable for immediate use in settings where resources, equipment, and staff are limited. Tools evaluated range from charts for recording weight gain during pregnancy to a simple band, made from used X-ray film, for measuring arm circumference.
The book has 17 chapters presented in five parts, each devoted to an individual anthropometric indicator. These include weight gain in pregnancy, prepregnancy weight, height, arm circumference, and weight-for-height and body mass index. Each part opens with a fully referenced discussion of basic issues, including the uses of the indicator and the existence of any universal standards or values for determining normal nutritional status, linking status to pregnancy outcome, and detecting women at risk. The discussion, which is presented in a question-and-answer format, serves to summarize both scientific knowledge and practical experiences while also defining the strengths and weaknesses of the indicator, particularly when used under primitive conditions and at different times during a woman's reproductive life. Each part also includes a detailed evaluation of research findings and methodological problems, followed by a concise list of recommendations and conclusions concerning field application of the monitoring tool. The book identifies arm circumference as the most promising tool for screening nutritional status during pregnancy and detecting women at risk.