Journal article Open Access

Calcium status in Moroccan children and adolescents assessed by 24-hour urinary excretion

Bouziani, Amina; Saeid, Amina; Idrissi, Mohamed; El Mzibri, Mohammed; Bendjeddou, Kaoutar; El Berri, Hicham; Elhamdouchi, Asmaa; El Yahyaoui, Adil; El Kari, Khalid; Benkirane, Hasnae; Aguenaou, Hassan

Background: Worldwide, calcium (Ca) deficiency represents one of the most important deficiencies of all micronutrients. When associated with vitamin D deficiency, it constitutes a major health issue, responsible for many functional diseases especially osteoporosis and fracture risk at the later life. In the Moroccan population, data on Ca deficiency risks are really limited. The urinary losses present a significant determinant of Ca urinary excretion being a crucial determinant of its retention in the human body. Aims: This study was conducted to determine the level of urinary Ca excretion in a sample of Moroccan children and adolescents, and to assess the prevalence of Ca deficiency. Subjects and Methods:  131 children and adolescents, aged between 6 and 18 years, were recruited from public schools at Rabat-Salé-Kénitra region in the framework of a descriptive cross-sectional study. Socio-economic status, morbidity, and anthropometric parameters were assessed for each participant. Ca assessment was estimated through 24-hour urine measurements by ICP-mass spectrometry. Results: The total mean of urinary Ca was 72.48 mg/day and about 73% of participants presented a urinary Ca deficiency. No significant differences were observed according to sex and nutritional status. Conclusions: Moroccan children and adolescents might be at risk of Ca deficiency complications. Based on this finding, an appropriate intervention strategy should be adopted to control this deficiency through an overall assessment of Ca deficiency in general population.

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