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Anaemia in pregnant women is a public health problem, especially in developing countries. The aim of this study was to assess the prevalence and related risk factors of anaemia during pregnancy in a large multicentre retrospective study (n = 44,002) and to determine the adverse pregnancy outcomes in women with or without anaemia.
The study is a secondary data analysis of a retrospective study named “Gestational diabetes mellitus Prevalence Survey (GPS) study in China”. Structured questionnaires were used to collect socio-demographic characteristics, haemoglobin levels and pregnancy outcomes from all the participants. Anaemia in pregnancy is defined as haemoglobin < 110 g/L. We used SPSS software to assess the predictors of anaemia and associated adverse pregnancy outcomes.
The overall prevalence of anaemia was 23.5%. Maternal anaemia was significantly associated with maternal age ≥ 35 years (AOR = 1.386), family per capita monthly income< 1000 CNY (AOR = 1.671), rural residence (AOR = 1.308) and pre-pregnancy BMI < 18.5 kg/m2 (AOR = 1.237). Adverse pregnancy outcomes, including GDM, polyhydramnios, preterm birth, low birth weight (< 2500 g), neonatal complications and NICU admission, increased significantly (P < 0.001) in those with anaemia than those without.
The results indicated that anaemia continues to be a severe health problem among pregnant women in China. Anaemia is associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes. Pregnant women should receive routine antenatal care and be given selective iron supplementation when appropriate.