Zinc supplementation in children with respiratory infections
Pneumonia is a severe form of acute lower respiratory tract infection and is the leading cause of death in children under 5 years of age worldwide.
Zinc is important for cellular growth, cellular differentiation and metabolism and deficiency limits childhood growth and decreases resistance to infections. Although severe zinc deficiency is rare in humans, mild to moderate deficiency may be common worldwide.
Several studies have suggested that zinc supplementation may reduce the frequency and severity of respiratory infections in children, however results thus far have been inconsistent.
Further research is needed before specific recommendations can be made.
Status: not currently available
Related Cochrane reviews
Zinc supplementation for the prevention of pneumonia in children aged 2 months to 59 months
Zinc supplementation for preventing mortality, morbidity, and growth failure in children aged 6 months to 12 years of age
Other related systematic reviews
Preventive zinc supplementation in developing countries: impact on mortality and morbidity due to diarrhea, pneumonia and malaria
Role of zinc administration in prevention of childhood diarrhea and respiratory illnesses: a meta-analysis.