For surviving children born in the three to five years before the survey, HWHTAPCT (HW4) reports the child's height-for-age percentile, based on smoothed percentile growth charts by age and sex developed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
Low child height-for-age, or "stunting," is an indicator of chronic malnutrition,
The 5th percentile on growth charts has often been used as a screening cutoff to identify infants and children at greater nutritional and health risk.
HWHEIGHT (HW3) reports the child's length or height as measured by DHS personnel. See this variable and HWHTHOWMEAS (HW15) for specifics on child length/height measurement. The related variable KIDAGEMO (HW1) reports the child's age in months at the time of measurement.
For an alternative measure of child stunting in terms of height-for-age for the same reference population, see HWHAZNCHS (HW5). HWHAZNCHS reports the difference between the child's height and the median height of the CDC reference population of the same age and sex, expressed in units equal to one standard deviation of the reference population's distribution.