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Arch Latinoam Nutr. 2008 Jun;58(2):132-8.

[Maternal anemia in Concepción province, Chile: association with maternal nutritional status and fetal growth].

[Article in Spanish]

Author information

Departamento de Salud Pública, Facultad de Medicina, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago, Chile.


Previous studies in Santiago, Chile have established that anemia in the earliest stages of pregnancy is a public health issue. The situation in other parts of the country is unknown. The purpose of this study is to establish the prevalence of anemia in pregnant women in the province of Concepcion and evaluate its association with maternal nutricional status and fetal growth. The study included 1782 women with singleton pregnancies who began prenatal check-ups in 2004 at the public primary health care centers. Anemia was established using the following criteria: from WHO (Hb < 11 g / dl) and from the USA Center for Disease Control (CDC) (Hb < percentile 5 for each gestational week). Anemia prevalence was compared in relation to independent study variables: maternal age, parity, morbidity and smoking habit, and mother and child anthropometry. A multivariable logistic regression model studied the possible effect of anemia on fetal growth. The prevalence of anemia was 10.9% and 14.5% using the WHO and CDC criteria, respectively. The mother's nutritional status was significantly associated with anemia. However, anemia according to WHO and CDC criteria at the beginning of pregnancy was not significantly associated to fetal growth in the univariate and multivariate analyses. The prevalence of anemia in the province of Concepcion constitutes a public health problem that needs to be addressed and it is slightly higher to that recently observed in the county of Puente Alto, Santiago.

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