Table 1

Case definitions of wasting using NCHS growth references and WHO growth standards6

Weight-for-height z-score*
NCHSWHO
Wasting<−2<−2
Moderate≥−3 to <−2≥−3 to <−2
Severe<−3<−3
  • (eg, z-score −1 = 1 SD below mean)

  • * z-scores represent SD below the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) or WHO population mean (eg, z-score -1 = 1 standard deviation below mean).