Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) are essential for evaluating the efficacy of clinical interventions, where the causal chain between the agent and the outcome is relatively short and simple and where results may be safely extrapolated to other settings. However, causal chains in public health interventions are complex, making RCT results subject to effect modification in different populations. Both the internal and external validity of RCT findings can be greatly enhanced by observational studies using adequacy or plausibility designs. For evaluating large-scale interventions, studies with plausibility designs are often the only feasible option and may provide valid evidence of impact. There is an urgent need to develop evaluation standards and protocols for use in circumstances where RCTs are not appropriate.
Background Hypertension can be detected at the primary health-care level and low-cost treatments can effectively control hypertension. We aimed to measure the prevalence of hypertension and progress in its detection, treatment, and control from 1990 to 2019 for 200 countries and territories. MethodsWe used data from 1990 to 2019 on people aged 30-79 years from population-representative studies with measurement of blood pressure and data on blood pressure treatment. We defined hypertension as having systolic blood pressure 140 mm Hg or greater, diastolic blood pressure 90 mm Hg or greater, or taking medication for hypertension. We applied a Bayesian hierarchical model to estimate the prevalence of hypertension and the proportion of people with hypertension who had a previous diagnosis (detection), who were taking medication for hypertension (treatment), and whose hypertension was controlled to below 140/90 mm Hg (control). The model allowed for trends over time to be non-linear and to vary by age.Findings The number of people aged 30-79 years with hypertension doubled from 1990 to 2019, from 331 (95% credible interval 306-359) million women and 317 (292-344) million men in 1990 to 626 (584-668) million women and 652 (604-698) million men in 2019, despite stable global age-standardised prevalence. In 2019, age-standardised hypertension prevalence was lowest in Canada and Peru for both men and women; in Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, and some countries in western Europe including Switzerland, Spain, and the UK for women; and in several low-income and middle-income countries such as Eritrea, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, and Solomon Islands for men. Hypertension prevalence surpassed 50% for women in two countries and men in nine countries, in central and eastern Europe, central Asia, Oceania, and Latin America. Globally, 59% (55-62) of women and 49% (46-52) of men with hypertension reported a previous diagnosis of hypertension in 2019, and 47% (43-51) of women and 38% (35-41) of men were treated. Control rates among people with hypertension in 2019 were 23% (20-27) for women and 18% (16-21) for men. In 2019, treatment and control rates were highest in South Korea, Canada, and Iceland (treatment >70%; control >50%), followed by the USA, Costa Rica, Germany, Portugal, and Taiwan. Treatment rates were less than 25% for women and less than 20% for men in Nepal, Indonesia, and some countries in sub-Saharan Africa and Oceania. Control rates were below 10% for women and men in these countries and for men in some countries in north Africa, central and south Asia, and eastern Europe. Treatment and control rates have improved in most countries since 1990, but we found little change in most countries in sub-Saharan Africa and Oceania. Improvements were largest in high-income countries, central Europe, and some upper-middle-income and recently high-income countries including
ABSTRACT. Objective. It is widely assumed that growth faltering starts at around 3 months of age, but there has been no systematic assessment of its timing using representative national datasets from a variety of countries.Methodology. The World Health Organization Global Database on Child Growth and Malnutrition includes the results of 39 nationally representative datasets from recent surveys in developing countries. Based on these data, mean z scores of weight for age, length/height for age, and weight for length/height were compared with the National Center for Health Statistics and Cambridge growth references, for children younger than 60 months.Results. Mean weights start to falter at about 3 months of age and decline rapidly until about 12 months, with a markedly slower decline until about 18 to 19 months and a catch-up pattern after that. Growth faltering in weight for length/height is restricted to the first 15 months of life, followed by rapid improvement. For length/height for age, the global mean is surprisingly close to National Center for Health Statistics and Cambridge references at birth, but faltering starts immediately afterward, lasting well into the third year.Conclusions. These findings highlight the need for prenatal and early life interventions to prevent growth failure. Pediatrics 2001;107(5). URL: http://www. pediatrics.org/cgi/content/full/107/5/e75; growth, body height, body weight, infant nutrition disorders, child nutrition disorders.ABBREVIATIONS. UNICEF, United Nations Children's Fund; WHO, World Health Organization; NCHS, National Center for Health Statistics; SD, standard deviation; NHANES, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey; IMCI, Integrated Management of Childhood Illnesses. S tunting affects 182 million (33%) and being underweight affects 150 million (27%) of the world's children 1 ; these are associated with over half of the 10 million annual deaths of children under 5 years. 2 Developing countries account for almost all of this burden, with 70% of all early child mortality and malnutrition concentrated in subSaharan Africa and South Asia. Despite setting a goal of reducing malnutrition by 50% at the World Summit for Children, 3 few countries in these 2 regions will have been successful in achieving this goal by the end of the decade. It is our contention that one of the reasons for failure is the lack of clear definition and common understanding of what the problem is. The purpose of this article is to try to bring more clarity to these issues.Waterlow 4 proposed a functional classification for child malnutrition that separated children who had acute malnutrition from those with chronic malnutrition. The acutely malnourished children were those with adequate height for age but inadequate weight for height (wasted). The chronically malnourished children were those that had inadequate height for age (stunted). Chronically malnourished children could also be acutely malnourished, in which case they would be both stunted and wasted. The Waterlow Classification was c...
Background Population-based data on COVID-19 are essential for guiding policies. There are few such studies, particularly from low or middle-income countries. Brazil is currently a hotspot for COVID-19 globally. We aimed to investigate severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) antibody prevalence by city and according to sex, age, ethnicity group, and socioeconomic status, and compare seroprevalence estimates with official statistics on deaths and cases. Methods In this repeated cross-sectional study, we did two seroprevalence surveys in 133 sentinel cities in all Brazilian states. We randomly selected households and randomly selected one individual from all household members. We excluded children younger than 1 year. Presence of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 was assessed using a lateral flow point-of-care test, the WONDFO SARS-CoV-2 Antibody Test (Wondfo Biotech, Guangzhou, China), using two drops of blood from finger prick samples. This lateral-flow assay detects IgG and IgM isotypes that are specific to the SARS-CoV-2 receptor binding domain of the spike protein. Participants also answered short questionnaires on sociodemographic information (sex, age, education, ethnicity, household size, and household assets) and compliance with physical distancing measures. Findings We included 25 025 participants in the first survey (May 14–21) and 31 165 in the second (June 4–7). For the 83 (62%) cities with sample sizes of more than 200 participants in both surveys, the pooled seroprevalence increased from 1·9% (95% CI 1·7–2·1) to 3·1% (2·8–3·4). City-level prevalence ranged from 0% to 25·4% in both surveys. 11 (69%) of 16 cities with prevalence above 2·0% in the first survey were located in a stretch along a 2000 km of the Amazon river in the northern region. In the second survey, we found 34 cities with prevalence above 2·0%, which included the same 11 Amazon cities plus 14 from the northeast region, where prevalence was increasing rapidly. Prevalence levels were lower in the south and centre-west, and intermediate in the southeast, where the highest level was found in Rio de Janeiro (7·5% [4·2–12·2]). In the second survey, prevalence was similar in men and women, but an increased prevalence was observed in participants aged 20–59 years and those living in crowded conditions (4·4% [3·5–5·6] for those living with households with six or more people). Prevalence among Indigenous people was 6·4% (4·1–9·4) compared with 1·4% (1·2–1·7) among White people. Prevalence in the poorest socioeconomic quintile was 3·7% (3·2–4·3) compared with 1·7% (1·4–2·2) in the wealthiest quintile. Interpretation Antibody prevalence was highly heterogeneous by country region, with rapid initial escalation in Brazil's north and northeast. Prevalence is strongly associated with Indigenous ancestry and low socioeconomic status. These population subgroups are unlikely to be protected if the policy response to the pandemic by th...
ObjectiveEstimated fetal weight (EFW) and fetal biometry are complementary measures used to screen for fetal growth disturbances. Our aim was to provide international EFW standards to complement the INTERGROWTH‐21st Fetal Growth Standards that are available for use worldwide.MethodsWomen with an accurate gestational‐age assessment, who were enrolled in the prospective, international, multicenter, population‐based Fetal Growth Longitudinal Study (FGLS) and INTERBIO‐21st Fetal Study (FS), two components of the INTERGROWTH‐21st Project, had ultrasound scans every 5 weeks from 9–14 weeks' until 40 weeks' gestation. At each visit, measurements of fetal head circumference (HC), biparietal diameter, occipitofrontal diameter, abdominal circumference (AC) and femur length (FL) were obtained blindly by dedicated research sonographers using standardized methods and identical ultrasound machines. Birth weight was measured within 12 h of delivery by dedicated research anthropometrists using standardized methods and identical electronic scales. Live babies without any congenital abnormality, who were born within 14 days of the last ultrasound scan, were selected for inclusion. As most births occurred at around 40 weeks' gestation, we constructed a bootstrap model selection and estimation procedure based on resampling of the complete dataset under an approximately uniform distribution of birth weight, thus enriching the sample size at extremes of fetal sizes, to achieve consistent estimates across the full range of fetal weight. We constructed reference centiles using second‐degree fractional polynomial models.ResultsOf the overall population, 2404 babies were born within 14 days of the last ultrasound scan. Mean time between the last scan and birth was 7.7 (range, 0–14) days and was uniformly distributed. Birth weight was best estimated as a function of AC and HC (without FL) as log(EFW) = 5.084820 − 54.06633 × (AC/100)3 − 95.80076 × (AC/100)3 × log(AC/100) + 3.136370 × (HC/100), where EFW is in g and AC and HC are in cm. All other measures, gestational age, symphysis–fundus height, amniotic fluid indices and interactions between biometric measures and gestational age, were not retained in the selection process because they did not improve the prediction of EFW. Applying the formula to FGLS biometric data (n = 4231) enabled gestational age‐specific EFW tables to be constructed. At term, the EFW centiles matched those of the INTERGROWTH‐21st Newborn Size Standards but, at < 37 weeks' gestation, the EFW centiles were, as expected, higher than those of babies born preterm. Comparing EFW cross‐sectional values with the INTERGROWTH‐21st Preterm Postnatal Growth Standards confirmed that preterm postnatal growth is a different biological process from intrauterine growth.ConclusionsWe provide an assessment of EFW, as an adjunct to routine ultrasound biometry, from 22 to 40 weeks' gestation. However, we strongly encourage clinicians to evaluate fetal growth using separate biometric measures such as HC and AC, as well as EFW, to...
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