JOURNAL ARTICLE
RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED TRIAL

Iron prophylaxis during pregnancy — how much iron is needed? A randomized dose- response study of 20-80 mg ferrous iron daily in pregnant women

Nils Milman, Thomas Bergholt, Lisbeth Eriksen, Keld-Erik Byg, Niels Graudal, Palle Pedersen, Jens Hertz
Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 2005, 84 (3): 238-47
15715531

OBJECTIVE: To determine the lowest dose of iron preventative of iron deficiency and iron deficiency anemia in pregnancy.

METHODS: A randomized, double-blind intention-to-treat study comprising 427 healthy pregnant women allocated into four groups taking ferrous iron (as fumarate) in doses of 20 mg (n = 105), 40 mg (n = 108), 60 mg (n = 106), and 80 mg (n = 108) from 18 weeks of gestation. Iron status markers [hemoglobin (Hb), serum ferritin, and serum soluble transferrin receptor (sTfR)] were measured at 18 weeks (inclusion), 32 weeks, and 39 weeks of gestation and 8 weeks postpartum. Side effects of iron supplements were recorded. Iron deficiency was defined as serum ferritin <13 microg/l and iron deficiency anemia as serum ferritin <13 microg/l and Hb <5th percentile in iron replete pregnant women.

RESULTS: There were no significant differences between variables in the four groups at inclusion. At 32 and 39 weeks of gestation, group 20 mg had significantly lower median serum ferritin (13 and 16 microg/l) than group 40 mg (17 and 21 microg/l), group 60 mg (18 and 23 microg/l), and group 80 mg (21 and 24 microg/l) (p < 0.0001). At 32 and 39 weeks of gestation, group 20 mg had a significantly higher prevalence of iron deficiency (50 and 29%) than group 40 mg (26 and 11%), group 60 mg (17 and 10%), and group 80 mg (13 and 9%) (p < 0.001). The prevalence of iron deficiency anemia at 39 weeks of gestation was significantly higher in group 20 mg (10%) than in group 40 mg (4.5%), group 60 mg (0%), and group 80 mg (1.5%) (p = 0.02). At 32 weeks of gestation, mean Hb in group 20 mg was lower than in group 80 mg (p = 0.06). There were no significant differences in iron status (ferritin, sTfR, and Hb) between group 40, 60, and 80 mg. Postpartum, group 20 mg had significantly lower median serum ferritin than group 40, 60, and 80 mg (p < 0.01). The prevalence of postpartum iron deficiency anemia was low and similar in the four groups. The frequency of gastrointestinal symptoms was not significantly different in the four iron supplement groups and thus not related to the iron dose.

CONCLUSION: In Danish women, a supplement of 40 mg ferrous iron/day from 18 weeks of gestation appears adequate to prevent iron deficiency in 90% of the women and iron deficiency anemia in at least 95% of the women during pregnancy and postpartum.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article

Discussion

You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read
15715531
×

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.

×

Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"