Abstract of Dissertation

Keyword : WHO; Iron Deficiency Anemia; Adolescent girls; Awareness

Objective : The study assesses the awareness about Iron Deficiency Anemia among urban adolescent girls in New Delhi and to investigate any significant association between demographic characteristics and awareness about Iron Deficiency Anemia among urban adolescent girls of New Delhi.

Background : Anemia in adolescent girls is now recognized to be a public health problem along with anemia in other population groups such as young children and pregnant women. According to WHO, about 62% of urban adolescent girls from the lower socio-economic group are estimated to be anemic. WHO estimates the number of anemic people worldwide to be a staggering two billion with 1 approximately 50% of all anemia attributable to iron deficiency. Iron deficiency and iron deficiency anemia (IDA) in adolescence is a major public health problem. Therefore, this study was aimed to determine the awareness of iron deficiency anemia among urban adolescent girls of New Delhi

Methodology : A cross-sectional study was conducted in the slum pockets of New Delhi and a sample of 150 urban adolescent girls were taken under study through convenient sampling technique. A semi-structured questionnaire was formulated, and Primary data was collected through personal interview of adolescent girls in the age group of 10-19 years.

Findings : Around 47% i.e. 71 out of 150 adolescent girls were of the age group of 16-19 years. Study status of girls is not up to the mark as only 38% i.e. 57 out of 150 girls go to school and 47% did not go to school. Only 37% of the adolescent girls had heard about anemia and 63% did not even hear about anemia. Demographic Characteristics were analyzed to identify any significant association with awareness about anemia and it was found that study status and marital status shows significant association with awareness about anemia in adolescent girls as p-value was found to be less than 0.05.

Recommendations : It was observed that knowledge among adolescent girls about Iron Deficiency Anemia is poor as few have only heard about anemia. This is mainly because of very less number of girls going to school. There was a significant association found between study status and awareness about anemia. Therefore, health education through a school-based intervention can be provided to educate about the importance of nutrition for preventing nutritional anemia, to introduce with the food varieties (sources of iron) and to teach the causes and consequences of iron deficiency anemia.