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Revista Brasileira de Epidemiologia

Print version ISSN 1415-790X


CHIAVEGATTO FILHO, Alexandre Dias Porto; LAURENTI, Ruy; GOTLIEB, Sabina Lea Davidson  and  JORGE, Maria Helena Prado de Mello. Malnutrition as an underlying or associated cause of death: analysis of the quality of information on women of reproductive age. Rev. bras. epidemiol. [online]. 2007, vol.10, n.1, pp.30-38. ISSN 1415-790X.

Mortality statistics are frequently based only on the underlying causes of death. The use of multiple causes of death may considerably improve the study of the presence of some diseases that are not usually mentioned as underlying causes of death, such as malnutrition. The objective of this study was to study the presence of malnutrition upon death in women at reproductive age and its association with other diseases, in addition to analyzing the quality of the information on death certificates. The target population consisted of deaths of women from 10 to 49 years old in the first semester of 2002, among residents of the capitals of Brazilian states plus the Federal District. The research was based on the RAMOS methodology (Reproductive Age Mortality Survey) that allowed the preparation of a new death certificate (N-DC) and its comparison with the original one (O-DC) done before the investigation. Out of the total 7,332 cases analyzed before the study, 12 showed malnutrition as the underlying cause and 136, as an associated cause. On the N-DC after investigation, this was the case for 9 and 179 cases, respectively. On the O-DC, the underlying causes mentioned most often (with malnutrition as an associated cause) were AIDS (20.3%) and malignant neoplasm of digestive organs (13.5%). On the N-DC, the underlying causes mentioned most often were aids (30.3%) and tuberculosis (11.2%). This paper points out the importance of the presence of some underlying causes of death (such as AIDS and tuberculosis) with malnutrition as an associated cause in the mortality of women at reproductive age.

Keywords : Mortality; Malnutrition; Women; Death Certificates.

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