The Prevalence of Anemia Among Pregnant Women at Booking in Enugu, South Eastern Nigeria

Cyril C. Dim, MBBS (Nig); Hyacinth E. Onah, MBBS (Nig), MPA, FMCOG, FWACS, FICS

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Results

All 530 pregnant women were married and had a mean age of 30.2 ± 5.2 years. Five hundred twenty (98.1%) were of the Igbo tribe. The 10 others were made up of 4 (0.8%) Yorubas; 2 (0.4%) Idomas; and 1 (0.2%) each of Urhobo, Ishan, Ibibio, and Igala. The mean gestational age at booking was 21.7 ± 7.1 weeks (range, 6-37). One hundred eighty-seven (35.3%) of the study population were nulliparous, 257 (48.5%) multiparous, whereas 86 (16.2%) were grandmultiparous. For the multiparous and the grandmultiparous women, the mean interval between the last confinement and the index pregnancy was 2.2 ± 1.8 years.

Two hundred fourteen (40.4%) of the study population were anemic (hemoglobin [Hb] < 11g%) at booking, out of which 194 (90.7%) were mildly anemic and 20 (9.3%) were moderately anemic. No case of severe anemia was noted. The HIV status of 8 (1.5%) of the 530 cases was not indicated. Twenty-seven (5.2%) of the remaining cases were positive for HIV-1 and HIV-2 infection. The prevalence of anemia at booking increased significantly with increasing gestational age at booking (P = .01) and with HIV-positive status (P = .00). About 26.5% of the women who booked in the first trimester were anemic compared with 41.8% and 46.0% for second and third trimesters, respectively ( Table 1 ). Twenty (74.1%) of 27 mothers who were HIV-positive were anemic. Table 2 shows that the prevalence of anemia at booking increased with parity but the relationship was not statistically significant (P = .06). Patients' age and birth interval did not affect hemoglobin concentration of pregnant women at booking (P > .05).

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