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Kwashiorkor in Children

Kwashiorkor can be defines as a situation which is caused due to deficiency of protein. It is also a form of malnutrition. It occurs mainly in the areas when there is less food supply or when the people do not have an understanding that what is a proper diet for them or it may also be due to famine.

This disease is generally found in poor countries. It comes during a natural disaster or a drought. This is commonly found in adult and is very rarely found in children. It is generally a sign of child abuse. For future precaution, high protein content is expected. Energy and a protein deficiency disease occur commonly in the children. Some proofs are found that aflatoxins in the foods may play an important role in the encouragement of Kwashiorkor. This toxin harms the liver, which is then not able to produce a protein that is found in plasma. When the food storage is improved and become rich in protein may lower the incidence of Kwashiorkor.

Symptoms of Kwashiorkor

1. Changed hair condition i.e. in color or the texture.
2. Swelling
3. Dermatitis
4. Shock at the late stage.
5. When there is loss in the muscle mass.
6. Protrudes i.e the condition when the belly comes out.
7. Due to fatigue
8. Diarrhea
9. A condition when the weight cannot be gained at the speed expected.
10. When the skin pigment changes.
11. Coma at the later stage.
12. When the muscle mass is reduced.
13. Irritability.
14. To examine physically it may show a liver in enlarged size and a swelling too.

Treatment of Kwashiorkor

Intake of huge amount of calories and protein will be effective in the state of Kwashiorkor, only if the treatment has been started at the early stage. The children who have gone through this disease will never reach to their full growth and height.

Treatment of Kwashiorkor may fully depend on the condition. Immediate treatment is required to maintain the blood pressure and restore the blood volume.

Firstly the calories are given in the form of carbohydrates, sugars and fats. Proteins are provided with when already good amount of calorie has been given. Minerals and vitamins are essential supplements.

Foods that are provided must be introduced steadily. Carbohydrates are given first to gain energy firs and then protein food is supplied. Most of the malnourished children will encourage intolerance to lactose i.e. milk sugar. They will require the supplements given along with the enzyme lactase so as to tolerate the products produced by milk.

When one is treated at an early stage, a good result can be seen. If Kwashiorkor is treated at its late stage it may improve the general health of the child but it may leave some problems that might be physical or mental for future too. If the treatment is not given on time the situation may become worse and might lead to life threatening.

To keep precaution from Kwashiorkor, points are to be kept in mind that there are enough amounts of protein, carbohydrates and calories in the diet as much as at least ten percent of the total calories and twelve percent in fat and twelve percent of protein in total calories.

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