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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Morbidity and nutrition patterns of three nomadic pastoralist communities of Chad.

As a part of an interdisciplinary research and action programme, morbidity and nutritional patterns were assessed in three nomadic communities: Fulani and Arab cattle breeders and Arab camel breeders, of two prefectures in Chad. The predominant morbidity pattern of Chadian nomadic pastoralists (representing approximately 10% of the total population of the country) had not been documented so far. A total of 1092 women, men and children was examined by a physician and interviewed during two surveys in the dry season and one in the wet season (1999--2000). Participants with no complaint were rare. Pulmonary disorders (e.g. bronchitis) were most often diagnosed for children under 5 years of age. Of the adult participants, 4.6% were suspected of tuberculosis. Febrile diarrhoea occurred more often during the wet season when access to clean drinking water was precarious. Malaria was only rarely clinically diagnosed among Arabs during the dry season, whereas Fulani, who stayed in the vicinity of Lake Chad, were also affected during this period. A 24-h dietary recall showed that less Arab women than men consumed milk during the dry season (66% versus 92%). Malnutrition was only documented for 3 out of 328 children (0--14 years). Arab women in childbearing age had a higher proportion of children not surviving when compared to Fulani women (0.2 versus 0.07). This study identified several implications for reseach and interventions in nomadic settings. Innovative and integrated health services for nomads can possibly be extended to many settings as nomadic pastoralists have in common a similar way of life driven by the needs of their animals.[1]


  1. Morbidity and nutrition patterns of three nomadic pastoralist communities of Chad. Schelling, E., Daoud, S., Daugla, D.M., Diallo, P., Tanner, M., Zinsstag, J. Acta Trop. (2005) [Pubmed]
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