Original paper

Mid-upper arm circumference as a measure of nutritional status among adult Bengalee male slum dwellers of Kolkata, India: relationship with self reported morbidity

Chakraborty, Raja; Bose, Kaushik; Bisai, Samiran

Anthropologischer Anzeiger Volume 67 No. 2 (2009), p. 129 - 137

published: Jun 1, 2009

DOI: 10.1127/0003-5548/2009/0017

BibTeX file

ArtNo. ESP140006702003, Price: 29.00 €

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This cross-sectional study was undertaken to investigate the relationship of mid-upper arm circumference (MUAC) with body mass index (BMI) and the self reported morbidity status. This was to assess the reliability of MUAC as a measure of nutritional and overall physical health status among the adult (> 18 years) Bengalee male slum dwellers of Kolkata, (India). Data on height, weight, MUAC and self reported morbidity were analysed for 474 individuals. The BMI was computed following the standard formula. Classification of chronic energy deficiency (CED) was done following the WHO guidelines. The mean (sd) age, height, weight, BMI and MUAC were 37.5 (14.2), 161.5 (6.2), 53.0 (9.5), 20.3 (kg/m2) and 25.0 cm, respectively. The mean BMI decreased significantly (F = 243.0; p < 0.001) from the highest muac group (22.5 kg/m2) to the lowest one (17.1 kg/m2). Overall prevalence of CED (BMI < 18.5 kg/m2) was 32.3%. The prevalence of CED also increased sharply from the highest MUAC group (3.0%) to the lowest group (84.2%) (X2 = 237.8; p < 0.001). the odds ratios (or) for being ced is very much high in the lowest muac group (or = 178.70, ci = 71.37-447.46). a significant (x2 = 19.168, p < 0.001) increase in the prevalence of self reported illness from the highest muac group (19%) to the lowest one (40.4%, or = 2.78; ci =1.68-4.62) was also observed. the mean muac was observed to decrease significantly (f = 7.157, p < 0.001) from non-ill group (g iv) to the group which reported to have both previous and recent illness (g i). the prevalence of undernourished (muac < 23.0 cm) also increased significantly (X2 = 21.54, p < 0.001) from G IV to thee G I. In conclusion, the MUAC can be used as an efficient alternative measurement in the evaluation of CED status among adult Bengalee males.


muacbody mass index (bmi)nutritional statushealthmorbidityblengaleemalesslum