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The Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition
ISSN: 1606-0997
EISSN: 1606-0997
Vol. 25, No. 1, 2007, pp. 75-81
Bioline Code: hn07009
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

The Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition, Vol. 25, No. 1, 2007, pp. 75-81

 en Nutritional Factors Associated with Anaemia in Pregnant Women in Northern Nigeria
VanderJagt, Dorothy J.; Brock, Hugh S.; Melah, George S.; El-Nafaty, Aliyu U.; Crossey, Michael J. & Glew, Robert H.


This study was conducted to assess the relative contribution of iron, folate, and B12 deficiency to anaemia in pregnant women in sub-Saharan Africa. In total, 146 pregnant women, who attended two antenatal clinics in Gombe, Nigeria, were recruited into the study. The majority (54%) of the women were in the third trimester. Blood samples were obtained for determination of haematocrit and for measurement of serum iron, total iron-binding capacity, ferritin, folate, vitamin B12, and homocysteine. Malaria was present in 15 (9.4%) women. Based on a haemoglobin value of <105 g/L, 44 (30%) women were classified as anaemic. The major contributing factor to anaemia was iron deficiency based on the serum concentration of ferritin (<10 ng/mL). The mean homocysteine concentration for all subjects was 14.1 µmol/L, and homocysteine concentrations were inversely correlated with concentrations of folate and vitamin B12. The serum homocysteine increased markedly at serum vitamin B12 levels below 250 pmol/L. The most common cause of anaemia in the pregnant women in northern Nigeria was iron deficiency, and the elevated concentrations of homocysteine were most likely due to both their marginal folate and vitamin B12 status.

Anaemia, Iron-deficiency; Pregnancy; Homocysteine; Folate; Vitamin B12; Cross-sectional studies; Nigeria

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