Hematologic features among anemic Cameroonian pregnant women: A cross sectional study
Introduction: iron deficiency anemia is the leading cause of anemia worldwide. It may also be the leading cause of anemia in pregnancy, although this has not yet been demonstrated in our country. The aim of the study was to describe hematologic features of Cameroonian anemic pregnant women.
Methods: this cross sectional analytical study was carried out in the maternity of the Yaoundé University Teaching Hospital, Cameroon, from March 1st, 2011 to February 28th, 2013. Two hundred women with singleton pregnancies and Hb concentration at booking <10 g/dl were recruited. Main variables recorded were maternal age, parity, marital status, gestational age, Hb concentration, blood group, Hb electrophoresis, mean corpuscular volume (MCV), mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (MCHC), pack cell volume (PCV). Data were analyzed using SPSS 18.0. P<0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Results: figures for 110 women (55%) showed microcytosis, hypochromia was observed in 122 (61%) women and megaloblastic anemia in eight women (4%). Thrombopenia was observed in 16 women (8%) and thrombocytosis in six women (3%). Anemia was microcytic hypochromic in 110 women (55%), megaloblastic in eight women (4%), normocytic hypochromic in 12 women (6%), and normocytic normochromic in 70 women (35%).
Conclusion: hematologic features of Cameroonian anemic pregnant women showed that although iron deficiency anemia is the leading cause of anemia, megaloblastic anemia is also present in our environment. A normal hematologic feature in more than the third of women shows that the cause of anemia is not always nutritional.