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Universal dietary salt iodization (UDSI) was implemented in Niger in 1996. However, since 2000
there was a slowdown in progress against iodine deficiency.
The objective was to assess iodine nutritional status of infants and their lactating mothers living in Dosso, the
state capital of a severe iodine deficiency region in Niger.
The study was centered on 238 full-term infants and their mothers. Some of the data collected were: arm circumference
(AC), head circumference (HC) of infant; familial thyroid disease history; the infant feeding method; age of
the mother and child; parity, occupation and educational level of the mother.
In infants, the urinary iodine concentration (UIC) ranged from 20 to 1600 μg/l with a median of 220 μg/L and
17.23 % had iodine deficiency (UIC<l00μg/L). In mothers, the UIC was within 10 and 820 μg/L with a median of 68
μg/L and 69.75 % had iodine deficiency. No significant statistical correlation was found between infant UIC and their age,
type of feeding and gender as well as educational level, occupational group, parity and age of their mothers (p>0.05).
Spearman's correlation test indicated weak significant correlation between maternal and infant UIC (r = 0,167, p = 0, 01).
Iodine status was suboptimal in 70% of mothers and 17% (mild to moderate) of breastfed infants, thus indicating
an urgent need to provide iodine supplement for lactating women in Dosso.