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Pakistan Journal of Nutrition
  Year: 2012 | Volume: 11 | Issue: 10 | Page No.: 998-1003
DOI: 10.3923/pjn.2012.998.1003
The Role of Prelacteal Feeding in Infant Methemoglobinemia Risk: Case Study in the Upper East Region of Ghana
Kubuga Clement Kubreziga

Abstract:
Exposure to high nitrate concentration and prelacteal feeding increase the risk of infant methemoglobinemia. This research was therefore carried out to test for the presence and concentration of nitrates in drinking water for households in upper east region where prelacteal feeding is common as compared to other regions in Ghana and to determine the risk of exposure to methemoglobinemia through unregulated sources of drinking water. An experimental study was carried out: Seven districts, twenty Communities and twenty eight unregulated sources of drinking water (nineteen wells and nine boreholes) were randomly selected. Key informant interviews were carried out in various selected communities to ascertain the number of existing and functional water sources. Nitrate-Nitrogen was determined using the hydrazine reduction method. 43 % of these water sources had nitrate levels above accepted limits indicating that nearly three (3) out of seven (7) unregulated water sources expose the consumers to high nitrate concentration (beyond 10 mg/L) which is highly unacceptable. 57% of them were however considered to be safe for consumption. Implying that nearly four (4) out of seven (7) unregulated water sources could be said to be safe for consumption. The margin between consuming safe and unsafe water from unregulated water sources in the region was therefore observed to be very slim. The risk of being exposed to methemoglobinemia was found to be 0.08; meaning about one (1) out of every twelve (12) children stands the risk of being exposed to methemoglobinemia when using unregulated water sources. Comparing wells and boreholes, the risk of wells was found to be 0.08 which is the same as the combined risk for all unregulated water sources. It can therefore be said that well water accounts largely for the risk of exposure to methemoglobinemia in the region. The risk from boreholes stood at 0.06. The difference in the two sources was attributed to boreholes being covered and sunk deeper than most wells.
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How to cite this article:

Kubuga Clement Kubreziga , 2012. The Role of Prelacteal Feeding in Infant Methemoglobinemia Risk: Case Study in the Upper East Region of Ghana. Pakistan Journal of Nutrition, 11: 998-1003.

DOI: 10.3923/pjn.2012.998.1003

URL: http://scialert.net/abstract/?doi=pjn.2012.998.1003

 
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