This work aims at studying the hypothesis that supplementation with megadoses of vitamin A has different effects in protection of morbidity in boys and girls aged up to three years, living in Brazil and the difference between the 20 years.
Population-based cross-sectional studies surveyed a representative cluster stratified sample of 8000 households in the state of CearÃ¡, Brazil, in 1987 and in 2007. Were included children aged from 6 months to 3 years. The variables analyzed included child nutritional status, potential nutritional determinants, hospitalizations, vitamin A supplementation status, occurrence of pneumonia and diarrhea and confounding factors. Using logistic regression models, were evaluated main effects and interactions in both years.
In 1987, about 4393 children were studied and 1378 in 2007, of all ages. In boy children aged from 12 to 35 months, was found an increase in the hospitalization risk for supplemented, (OR 2,11 CI 95% 1,14-3,91), and the inverse was found in girls, with a protective effect (OR 0,12, CI 95% 0,03 – 0,50), in the same age group. More refined analysis are being conducted and will be presented.
Vitamin A supplementation with megadoses probably have different effects among girls and boys. This finding can suggest adjusts in the current policies of supplementation.