Biochemical and hematological changes among anemic and non-anemic pregnant women attending antenatal clinic at the Bolgatanga regional hospital, Ghana
BioMed Central Ltd
Place of Publication
School of Medical and Health Sciences
Background: Anemia in pregnancy may not only be associated with maternal morbidity and mortality but can also be detrimental to the fetus. A definitive diagnosis of anemia is a pre-requisite to unravelling possible cause(s), to allow appropriate treatment intervention. It is hypothesised that measured hemoglobin (HGB), complemented by biochemical and other hematological parameters would enhance anemia diagnosis. Methods: This was a cross-sectional study among 400 pregnant women comprising 253 anemic and 147 non-anemic pregnant women, attending an antenatal clinic at Bolgatanga Regional Hospital, Ghana. Venous blood was collected and hemoglobin genotype, complete blood count and biochemical parameters [ferritin, iron, total iron binding capacity (TIBC), transferrin saturation (TfS), C-reactive protein (CRP) and bilirubin] were determined. Thick blood films were prepared for malaria parasitemia, while early morning stool and midstream urine samples were examined for enteric and urogenital parasites, respectively. Results: There were significantly reduced levels of HGB (p < 0.0001), HCT (p < 0.0001), MCV (p < 0.0001), iron (0.0273), ferritin (p = 0.018) and transferrin saturation (0.0391) and increased WBC (p = 0.006), RDW (p = 0.0480), TIBC (p = 0.0438) and positivity of CRP in anemic, compared to non-anemic pregnant women. Anemic women were associated with increased proportion of hemoglobinopathies (AS, SS and SC), Plasmodium falciparum, Schistosoma hematobium and intestinal parasite infections. Conclusion: Anemic pregnant women are associated with a significant derangement in hematological and iron indices that implicate iron deficiency. This was influenced by hemoglobinopathies and parasitic infections.