Background Two million people, that is over 30% of world’s population is anemic. In Nepal prevalence of anemia in pregnancy is 42% and low birth weight varies from 12 to 15 percentage. It has been noted from the previous study, the prevalence of LBW in BPKIHS is 17.56%.The low birth weight is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality among neonates and one of important parameter known to predispose the newborn to increase morbidity and mortality with LBW due to low hemoglobin level of mother. Hence we designed Cross Sectional descriptive study to find out the association between maternal hemoglobin level with gestational age and birth weight of the babies.
Methods 496 mothers admitted for delivery were recruited and their hemoglobin was measured. Hemoglobin in previous trimesters was noted from their antenatal record. The gestational age and birth weight of the babies recorded. Descriptive statistics was used for baseline characteristics. Comparison of means was done using student’s t test and analysis of variance to determine associations between the maternal hemoglobin status and the birth weights.
Results Out of 496, around 38.5% mother were anemic at some point of time during pregnancy. 42% were anemic during first trimester, 26.4% during second and 21.1% during third trimester. Mean birth weight of babies born to anemic and non-anemic mother was 2876 and 2949 gram respectively (p=0.172). Mean POG in anemic and non-anemic mother was 39 2/7 week and 39 5/7 week respectively (p=0.337).There was 9.28% premature and 90.72% mature baby. Frequency of LBW babies in anemic and non-anemic mother were 18.1% and 15.5% respectively (p=0.58).The correlation coefficient of gestational age and birth weight of baby with maternal hemoglobin were 0.003(p=.975), 0.072(p=.215), 0.13(p=0.005) and 0.065(p=0.421), 0.157(p=0.007),0.091(p=0.05) in first, second and third trimesters respectively.
Conclusion There were significant positive association between maternal hemoglobin level and birth weight and gestational age of the babies. Birth weight and Gestational age of the babies were low in mothers with anemia and increased as maternal hemoglobin increased and a U-shaped relation was observed between different range of hemoglobin and Period of gestation.
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