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Korean J Pediatr. 2006 Jan;49(1):24-28. Korean. Original Article.
Choi HK , Her JA , Jang SH , Kim DH , Yoon KL , Ahn YM .
Department of Pediatrics, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Korea.
Department of Pediatrics, Seoul Medical Center, Korea.
Department of Pediatrics, Seoul Women's Hospital, Korea.
Department of Pediatrics, Eulji University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.

PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to investigate the health status and nutritional condition of children living in a low-income community through anthropometric, laboratory evaluation. METHODS: A community-based survey identified children below 15 years living in a low-income community. Their weight, height, visual acuity, hearing level and dental status were measured. Blood sample were obtained on June and July, 2004. Hemoglobin, serum cholesterol, Hepatitis B antigen/antibody, AST and ALT were measured. RESULTS: A total of 285 students(M:F=141:144) aged 6 to 14 years were included in this study. The heights and weights in some grades were smaller than controls. The prevalence of obesity was 10.6 percent in males and 10.7 percent in females. The prevalence of abnormal visual acuity, hearing impairments and dental carries were 20.5 percent, 0.3 percent and 69.4 percent. The prevalence of anemia was 10.1 percent. Serum total cholesterol was over 200 mg/dL in 7 percent. They complained of abdominal pain(22.1 percent) and headache(17.1 percent). Hyperthyroidism, cataract, neurofibromatosis, severe atopic dermatitis, ventricular septal defect, strabismus and inguinal hernia were newly diagnosed. CONCLUSION: Mean heights and weights of children in the low-income community were smaller than controls. The prevalence of abnormal visual acuity, hearing impairment and dental carries were higher than in the 2003 national health survey. Additional research is needed to evaluate the health status of the low-income community.

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