Evid Based Nurs 2:12 doi:10.1136/ebn.2.1.12
  • Treatment

Daily zinc supplements reduced the incidence and severity of acute lower respiratory infections in children in India

 Question Can zinc supplementation reduce the incidence and severity of acute lower respiratory infections in infants and preschool children in India?


6 month randomised, double blind, placebo controlled trial.


Community based clinic in a city in India.


609 children who were 6–35 months of age (mean age 19 mo, 52% boys), had attended a community based clinic for diarrhoea, and had recovered from the initial diarrhoeal episode. Follow up was 99%.


Children were allocated to zinc gluconate, 10 mg (n=298), or placebo (n=311) given daily in 5 ml of liquid supplement containing vitamins A (800 U), B1 (0.6 mg), B2 (0.5 mg), B6 (0.5 mg), D3 (100 U), and E (3 mg) and niacinamide (10 mg). Duration of treatment was 6 months. Children who had diarrhoea received 10 ml of the supplement while they were ill.

Main outcome measures

Number of episodes of and days with acute lower respiratory infection, which was defined as having a cough and (1) raised respiratory rate or …

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