ABOUT IODINE DEFICIENCY DISORDER


IDD PROBLEM STATEMENT

Iodine deficiency is the single most common cause of preventable mental retardation and brain damage in the world. It also decreases child survival, causes goiters, and impairs growth and development. Iodine deficiency in pregnant women causes miscarriages, stillbirths, and other complications. Children with IDD can grow up stunted, apathetic, mentally retarded, and incapable of normal movements, speech, or hearing. Globally, 2.2 billion people (38% of the world's population) live in areas with iodine deficiency and risks its complications.

Iodine deficiency was once considered a minor problem, causing goiter, an unsightly but seemingly benign cosmetic blemish. However, it is now known that the effects on the developing brain are much more deadly, and constitute a threat to the social and economic development of many countries.

Effective and affordable technology exists to prevent iodine deficiency and the problems it causes. The most important are iodized salt and effective monitoring of iodine nutrition.

Problem Pyramid Solutions Fact Card Go To IDD Home

IDD PROBLEM PYRAMID

The above pyramid illustrates the fact that the visible effects of IDD (cretinism) account for only as much as 10% of the ramifications. At least 90% of IDD consequences remain hidden.


SOLUTIONS

The solution is relatively simple. A teaspoon of iodine is all a person requires in a lifetime, but because iodine cannot be stored for long periods by the body, tiny amounts are needed regularly. In areas of endemic iodine deficiency, where soil and therefore crops and grazing animals do not provide sufficient dietary iodine to the populace, food fortification and supplementation have proven highly successful and sustainable interventions. Iodized salt programs and iodized oil supplements are the most common tools in the fight against IDD.

1. Iodized Salt, first choice for intervention:

  • Salt is universally and regularly consumed.
  • Costs only US $0.04 per person annually.
  • Manufactured with simple technology.

3. Social Mobilization, resources already available:

  • Existing programmes have proven success.
  • Videos, manuals and periodicals target policy makers, health professionals and the public

2. Iodized Oil, practical supplementation:

  • Effective intervention for people at risk.
  • Easy to administer.

4. Research, multidisciplinary approach:

  • A large body of existing clinical, experimental and epidemiological studies can be applied.
  • Methods are proven and practical.

To address Iodine Deficiency Disorders:

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IDD FACT CARD

Fact Card Dimensions: 4" x 3"; available in English, French, and Spanish.

To obtain information about acquiring IDD Fact Cards please contact ICCIDD Communications Focal Point, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, 1440 Canal Street, Suite 2200, New Orleans, LA 70112, by sending your request and mailing address to ICEC@mailhost.tcs.tulane.edu

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Front Side of Fact Card...

Iodine is an essential element for thyroid function, necessary for the normal growth, development and functioning of the brain and body. Iodine deficiency is the single most common cause of preventable mental retardation and brain damage in the world.

The cause of Iodine Deficiency Disorders:

The effects of Iodine Deficiency Disorders:


Back Side of Fact Card...

IODINE DEFICIENCY SOLUTIONS:

Iodized Salt; first choice for intervention:
  • Salt is universally and regularly consumed.
  • Costs only about US $0.04 per persona annually.
  • Manufactured with simple technology.
Resources are available:
  • Videos, manuals and periodicals target policy makers, health professionals and the public.
  • A large body of clinical, experimental and epidemiological research studies can be applied to design and support any program.
Iodized Oil; a practical supplement:
  • Effective for people at risk.
  • Easy to administer.

FALLACIES vs. FACTS

International Council for Control of Iodine Deficiency Disorders.

For more information, contact the ICCIDD at:  iccidd@virginia.edu

or Officers and Regional Coordinators as listed in "About ICCIDD."


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