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Table 3 Relationship between acute malnutrition (wasting) and risk of malarial infection (N = 18)

From: Complex interactions between malaria and malnutrition: a systematic literature review

Author, Year, Reference WHZ cutoff Malaria outcome Risk estimate comparing children below and above WHZ cutoff Risk
Ayana 2015 [49] < − 2 Malaria by RDT “Non-significant association” reported No impact
Bilal Shikur 2016 [28] < − 2 Malaria by RDT or blood film AOR = 0.66 (95% CI = 0.21–2.03) No impact
< − 3 Malaria by RDT or blood film AOR = 2.90 (95% CI = 1.14–7.61), P = 0.025 Increased
Custodio 2009 [30] < − 2 Pf malaria parasitemia prevalence “Non-significant association” reported No impact
Deen 2002 [10] < − 2 Malaria episode (fever ≥ 37.5 °C or parasitemia > 5000/μL) RR = 0.87 (95% CI = 0.69–1.10) No impact
Deribew 2010 [51] < − 2 Pf malaria (any parasitemia) AOR = 0.6 (95% CI = 0.2–1.3), P = 0.18 No impact
Ehrhardt 2006 [11] < − 2 Fever OR = 1.74 (95% CI = 1.16–2.60), P = 0.004 .
< − 2 Clinical malaria (fever ≥ 37.5 °C plus any parasitemia) OR = 1.86 (95% CI = 1.14–3.02), P = 0.007 Increased
Fillol 2009 [27] < − 2 Clinical malaria (fever ≥ 37.5 °C plus parasitemia ≥ 3000/μL) OR = 0.33 (95% CI = 0.13–0.81), P = 0.02 Decreased
< − 2 High-density parasitemia (geometric mean ≥ 300/μL) AOR = 0.48 (95% CI = 0.04–5.34), P = 0.55 No impact
Friedman 2005 [26] < − 2 Concurrent malaria (any parasitemia) AOR = 0.75, P = 0.18 No impact
< − 2 High-density parasitemia (any species, > 1500–7000/μL) AOR = 0.96, P = 0.88 No impact
< − 2 Clinical malaria (fever plus high-density parasitemia) AOR = 1.11, P = 0.86 No impact
< − 2 Severe anaemia (Haemoglobin < 7 g/dL) AOR = 2.00, P = 0.04* .
Genton 1998 [14] < − 2 Pf malaria (fever plus any parasitemia) Adj. rate ratio = 0.92 (95% CI = 0.77–1.11), P = 0.4 No impact
< − 2 Pf malaria (fever plus parasitemia ≥ 5 × 109/L) Adj. rate ratio = 0.96 (95% CI = 0.77–1.19), P = 0.69 No impact
< − 2 Pf malaria (fever plus parasitemia ≥ 10 × 109/L) Adj. rate ratio = 0.97 (95% CI = 0.75–1.24), P = 0.78 No impact
Kateera 2015 [54] < − 2 Pf malaria (any parasitemia) “Non-significant association” reported No impact
Mitangala 2013 [21] < − 2 Pf malaria parasitemia (≥ 5000/μL) AOR = 0.34 (95% CI = 0.08–1.45), P = 0.15 No impact
Muller 2003 [18] < − 2 Pf malaria (fever plus parasitemia ≥ 1/μL) RR = 1.0 (95% CI = 0.9–1.2), P = 0.99 No impact
< − 2 Pf malaria (fever plus parasitemia ≥ 5000/μL) RR = 1.0 (95% CI = 0.9–1.2), P = 0.58 No impact
< − 2 Pf malaria (fever plus parasitemia ≥ 100,000/μL) RR = 1.0 (95% CI = 0.5–1.8), P = 0.94 No impact
Snow 1991 [17] < − 2 Clinical malaria (fever plus any parasitemia) “Non-significant association” reported No impact
< − 2 Asymptomatic malaria parasitemia “Non-significant association” reported No impact
Sumbele 2015 [57] < − 2 Clinical malaria parasitemia Wasted vs. Non-wasted: 6.5% vs. 9.7%, P = 0.78 No impact
< − 2 Asymptomatic malaria parasitemia Wasted vs. Non-wasted: 22.6% vs. 26.7%, P = 0.77 No impact
Takakura 2001 [29] < − 2 Pf malaria Wasted vs. Non-wasted: 17% vs. 4%, P < 0.05 Increased
< − 2 P. vivax malaria “Non-significant association” reported No impact
Uscategui Penuela 2009 [58] < − 2 Malaria infection OR = 2.64 (95% CI = 0.30–23.02), P = 0.38 No impact
Verhoef 2002 [13] < − 2 Laboratory confirmed malaria OR = 0.78 (95% CI = 0.58–1.05), P = 0.1 No impact
William 1997 [31] < − 2 Clinical malaria (fever plus para ≥ 1000/μL) “Non-significant association” reported No impact
< − 2 P. vivax malaria “Non-significant association” reported No impact
  1. Pf Plasmodium falciparum, WHZ weight-for-height Z-scores, CI confidence interval, OR odds ratio, HR hazard ratio, RR risk ratio, IRR incidence rate ratio, AOR adjusted odds ratio
  2. *Limited to anaemia