CURRENT CONCEPTS OF THE PATHOGENESIS OF PROTEIN-ENERGY MALNUTRITION IN CHILDHOOD
Iv Commonwealth Congress On Diarrhoea And Malnutrition; Karachi, Pakistan; Meeting Of The Commonwealth Association Of Pediatric Gastroenterology And Nutrition; November 21-24, 1997
The paper begins with an account of how ideas about the pathogenesis of PEM have developed. The presence of oedema is the most important diagnostic feature of the form of PEM commonly described as kwashiorkor. I go on the discuss the evidence for the classical theory that the oedema is caused by protein deficiency. Other factors must, however, be taken into account, particularly the possible roles of potassium deficiency and free radical damage. From the practical point of view of public health and prevention, a high prevalence of oedematous PEM implies that the diet of weanlings contains too little protein and its associated micro-nutrients, so that there is need for improvement in quality as well as quantity.
P = Plenary© Lippincott-Raven Publishers