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Role of iron supplementation in promoting maternal and fetal outcome

Authors Yekta Z, Pourali, Mladkova, Ghasemi-Rad M, Boromand F, Hazrati Tappeh K

Published 31 October 2011 Volume 2011:7 Pages 421—428


Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Zahra Yekta1, Reza Pourali2, Nikol Mladkova3, Mohammad Ghasemi-rad4, Farzane Boromand5, Khosrow Hazrati Tappeh6
1Department of Community Medicine; 2Medical Demonstration Facility, Faculty of Medicine, Urmia University of Medical Sciences, Urmia, Islamic Republic of Iran; 3Institute of Cell and Molecular Science, London, United Kingdom; 4Student Research Committee; 5Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology; 6Department of Mycology and Parasitology, Urmia University of Medical Sciences, Urmia, Islamic Republic of Iran

Background: The data comparing daily versus intermittent iron supplementation during pregnancy remain controversial. This study was undertaken to compare the efficacy of daily versus two different intermittent iron supplementation regimes on hematologic markers and birth outcomes in nonanemic pregnant women.
Methods: Two hundred and ten women with singleton pregnancies, no known disease, and hemoglobin levels >11.0 g/dL were randomly assigned to one of three groups, ie, Group A consuming two iron supplementation tablets once weekly (100 mg iron per week, n = 70), Group B consuming one tablet twice weekly (100 mg iron per week, n = 70) and Group C, consuming one tablet daily (50 mg iron per day, n = 70). No additional micronutrients were supplied. Hemoglobin and serum ferritin levels were measured at 20, 28, and 38 weeks. Pregnancy and birth outcomes (pregnancy termination, method of delivery, birth weight, stillbirth) were analyzed.
Results: In total, 201 women completed the protocol. There was a significant difference in mean hemoglobin and ferritin levels in Group B at 38 weeks (P = 0.018 and P = 0.035, respectively) but this difference was not clinically significant (hemoglobin >12 g/dL, ferritin >19 µg/L). There was a significant increase in ferritin in Group C (P = 0.03) at 28 weeks. No significant difference was observed with respect to pregnancy or birth outcome across the groups. All regimens prevented the occurrence of hemoglobin <10.5 g/dL, but weekly supplementation was associated with development of a hemoglobin level <11.0 g/dL (risk ratio 0.044).
Conclusion: Twice-weekly supplementation is as effective as daily supplementation, and may represent an acceptable compromise in iron supplementation regimens for nonanemic pregnant women.

Keywords: iron supplementation, pregnancy, anemia, outcome

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