Acute respiratory infections prevent improvement of vitamin a status in young infants supplemented with vitamin a

Academic Article


  • At immunization contact, 165 infants 2 1/2 months old were randomly assigned to receive either 15 mg vitamin A or placebo. Three such doses were given at monthly intervals with each diptheria, pertussis, tetanus and oral polio (DPT/OPV) immunization dose. Diarrhea and acute respiratory infection (ARI) morbidity was similar in the vitamin A and placebo groups. However, the duration (days/ child-year, mean±SD) of ARI was less in the vitamin A group (27.6±17.1 vs. 40.8±22.7; p=0.005). 61% of the infants remained deficient despite vitamin A supplementation. Among vitamin A supplemented infants only, diarrhea and ARI morbidity during the 3-month period were compared in children with normal versus children with abnormal relative dose response (RDR) at the end of the supplementation period. ARI episodes were more frequent in the supplemented infants who remained vitamin A deficient at the end of the 3-month period (p=0.027). Also, the cumulative duration (days, mean±SD) of fever and cough was 5.0±2.8 in the normal versus 11.2±6.0 in the deficient group (p=0.04). Thus, a large proportion of infants remain vitamin A deficient even after large dose supplementation because of frequent respiratory infections, particularly those accompanied by fever.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • The FASEB Journal  Journal
  • Author List

  • Mujibur Rahman M; Mahalanabis D; Alvarez JO; Wahed MA; Islam MA; Habte D; Khaled MA
  • Volume

  • 10
  • Issue

  • 3