Rajaie Cardiovascular, Medical, and Research Center, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, IR Iran
Background: Malnutrition is common among children with cardiovascular diseases. A few studies have been conducted on the relationship between malnutrition and the incidence of postoperative infections among these children. This study sought to evaluate the relationship between malnutrition and nosocomial infections in pediatric patients undergoing cardiac surgery. Methods: Totally, 129 children <15 years old who developed nosocomial infections after cardiac surgery were enrolled. According to weight for age, weight for height, and height for age, malnutrition was defined as mild, moderate, and severe. The association between some blood factors such as hemoglobin and hematocrit and malnutrition was also investigated. Results: The prevalence of mild, moderate, and severe malnutrition based on weight for age was 19.5% (n=23), 16.9% (n=20), and 32.2% (n=38), respectively; according to height for age was 15.4% (n=19), 13.8% (n=17), and 20.3% (n=25), respectively; and according to weight for height was 19.4% (n=24), 18.5% (n=23), and 31.5% (n=39), respectively. Pneumonia was significantly associated with moderate and severe malnutrition (P=0.006). Among biochemical indices, only hemoglobin (P=0.007) and hematocrit (P=0.01) were associated with malnutrition in these children. Conclusions: Pneumonia and anemia are associated with malnutrition in children undergoing cardiac surgery and it is necessary to resolve malnutrition before therapeutic processes.