Prevalence of Nutritional Deficiency Anaemia and Its Impact on Scholastic Performance among Undergraduate Medical Students BC21-BC23
Dr. Ningappa Asha Rani,
Assistant Professor, Department of Biochemistry, Adichunchanagiri Institute of Medical Sciences,
B G Nagara-571448, Karnataka, India.
Introduction: Nutritional deficiency anaemia can lead to development of headache, fatigue, lethargy, apathy, exertional dyspnoea, palpitations and tinnitus and thereby decrease the quality of everyday life to a great extent. Such symptoms may pose a hindrance for students in their academic life and have a negative impact on their career.
Aim: To determine prevalence of nutritional deficiency anaemia and its correlation with academic performance among medical students.
Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted at Adichunchanagiri Institute of Medical Sciences. Two hundred eighty nine healthy undergraduate medical students of both genders were included in this study. A predesigned and pre-structured questionnaire was used as a tool to obtain information regarding demographic profile, dietary habits and academic performance. Haemoglobin level was estimated. Student’s t-test and Chi-square test were employed.
Results: Majority of the participants were within the age group of 17-20 years (84.4%). The overall prevalence of anaemia was 15.6% with high rates among female students (93.3%), this gender difference was statistically significant (p<0.001). There was statistically significant difference in Hb% (p=0.009) among high and low performers. There was no association between the anaemic status and students scholastic performance (c2=3.1533, p=0.368).
Conclusion: The mean haemoglobin level was higher among low performer, indicating that nutritional anaemia may not \play a major role in educational performance and intelligence in higher education.