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Zinc supplements could reduce infant mortality by 43 %

babyAccording to a recent study, zinc supplements along with antibiotics can reduce mortality in children suffering from diseases like pneumonia and meningitis. The study, reported in the latest issue of the international medical journal, TheLancet, has found that babies who were given zinc supplement were 40 per cent less likely to experience treatment failure and their risk of death was reduced by 43 per cent.

The study had 700 babies aged between seven and 120 days. 352 babies were given a zinc supplement with antibiotics whilst the others a placebo. The researchers said that zinc supplements could cure diarrhoea and zinc supplement were already widely available as syrups or tablets in most countries. Around the globe, infections account for 40 % infant mortality

Speaking to journalists here, DBT Secretary M.K. Bhan said research had already shown that zinc supplements could help cure diarrhoea and zinc syrups or dispersible tablets were already available for its treatment in many countries.

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Worldwide, bacterial and other infections account for nearly two-thirds of deaths in children under five, with around two-fifths of the deaths occurring within the first month of life. In India, of the one million neonatal deaths that occur every year, more than a quarter are attributed to these infections.

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