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Beenish Tahira, Sadia Shabir, Misbah Noor, Shafaq Aziz, Attiya Fatima, Bushra Ahmad


Preterm birth is the most widely recognized reason for death among babies around the world. Around 15 million infants are preterm every year (5% to 18% of all death). In Pakistan, zinc deficiency is an emerging health problem as about 20.6% children were found to have serum zinc level<60 µg/dl. Objective: To compare mean weight and mean length of preterm neonates with and without zinc supplementation. Study Design: Randomized controlled trial and non-probability sampling technique. Setting: The study was conducted in Department of Pediatrics Unit-I, Neonatology section, Mayo Hospital Lahore. Duration of Study: 6 months from approval of this study Methodology: After approval of study from IRB, 200 neonates who met the inclusion criteria were included in the study. After taking informed consent, demographic variables (name, age, gestational age at birth, gender, contact number) were obtained. Weight and length of neonates was measured at baseline. Then neonates were randomly allocated into two groups A & B by using computer generated random number. Group A: Neonates were given oral zinc supplementation in dose of 2 mg/kg/day (in ml) zinc supplement. Group B: Neonates were not given any zinc supplementation. Mothers were advised to give exclusive breast feeding and bring babies after 1 month of initial presentation. Further follow up visit was at 4 months postnatal age. The weight, length of neonates was measured at 4 month age (as per operational definition). Those patients missed any follow up were excluded from the study. All data was entered in specially designed performa (attached). Results: The sample size of this study was dependent on the availability of participants in this regard, a sample of N=200 cases was recruited for this present study but only N=100 cases of each group (N=50 of with zinc supplementations) (N=50 without zinc supplementation) were enrolled during a period of total 60 days with 80% power of test, 5% margin of error, 95% confidence level and taking magnitude of weight i.e. 2779±638.7 grams with zinc supplementation and 2474.6±441.8 grams without zinc supplementation in preterm neonates. Independent sample t- test was used to compare results. Conclusion: We concluded that there is no significant difference between growth of preterm neonates with zinc supplementation & without zinc supplementation. Keywords: preterm neonates, weight, length, zinc supplementations


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