Deaths due to dysentery, acute and persistent diarrhoea among Brazilian infants.

C. G. Victora, S. R. Huttly, S. C. Fuchs, L. C. Nobre, F. C. Barros

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50 Scopus citations


In a population-based study, all infant deaths occurring in a one-year period in the metropolitan areas of Porto Alegre and Pelotas, in southern Brazil, were studied. There were 227 infants who presented diarrhoea during the fatal illness, and in 75% of these diarrhoea was considered to be the underlying cause of death. Acute diarrhoea (<14 days' duration) accounted for 28% of the deaths, persistent diarrhoea for 62% and dysentery for a further 10%. Approximately one-half of the children with persistent diarrhoea were admitted to a hospital in the first two weeks of the episode. Hospital-acquired infections were likely to have contributed to one- to two-thirds of deaths due to dysentery and persistent diarrhoea. A comparison with neighbourhood controls showed that breast milk provided substantial protection against deaths due to either acute or persistent diarrhoea.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7-11
Number of pages5
JournalActa paediatrica (Oslo, Norway : 1992). Supplement
StatePublished - Sep 1992
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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