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Salud Pública de México

Print version ISSN 0036-3634


VASQUEZ-MOLINA, María Eugenia et al. Relationship between maternal and neonatal iron stores. Salud pública Méx [online]. 2001, vol.43, n.5, pp.402-407. ISSN 0036-3634.

Objective. To establish the relationship of normal, low, and moderate blood iron values in mothers and their newborns. Material and Methods. A cross-sectional study was conducted among 163 pregnant women and their newborns, users of Hospital de Ginecología y Obstetricia número 15, Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social, from Chihuahua, Mexico. The mothers' clinical histories were collected and analyzed; hemoglobin, hematocrit, and ferritin serum levels were measured in maternal and umbilical cord samples. Iron maternal stores were determined by ferritin (µg /l) values as follows: low: £ 11; moderate: 12-20; and normal: ³ 20.1. The Kruskal- Wallis test was used to establish differences among group; the chi-squared test to determine differences of proportions; and Pearson's correlation coefficient for assessing the association between maternal and newborn iron stores. Results. A weak correlation between maternal and neonatal ferritin was found (r=0.14, p=0.07). Geometric means of neonatal ferritin for low, moderate, and normal maternal iron stores were 4.77, 4.85, and 5.02 respectively (p=0.12). The maternal iron stores changed after iron supplementation (p=0.01). Conclusions. Iron stores in mothers and their newborns are closely related. Women who take iron supplements during pregnancy have significantly higher iron stores at the end of pregnancy. The English version of this paper is available at:

Keywords : iron status; ferritin; pregnancy newborn; Mexico.

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