A study of risk factors for anaemia in pregnancy at the first antenatal clinic visit at Nnamdi Azikiwe university teaching hospital, Nnewi.
Background: This study is justified because anaemia in pregnancy is very common in this country and it is a major cause of maternal and perinatal morbidity and mortality among our populace.
Aim: To identify the risk factors for anaemia in pregnancy and evaluate the effects of these risk factors of anaemia in pregnancy among pregnant women attending their first (booking) antenatal clinic visit at NAUTH, Nnewi Anamabra State.
Methodology: This case control study involved seven hundred and fifty pregnant women at their first antenatal visit with three hundred and seventy-five as cases with anaemia compared to a matched three hundred and seventy-five controls without anaemia. The socio demographic, medical and obstetric information data were obtained including laboratory data. The data was analysed using univariate analysis and logistic regression.
Result: Univariate analysis revealed some potential risk factors, but after adjustment using logistic regression only six factors remained associated with increased risk of anaemia in pregnancy. These were low socioeconomic status ( OR = 2.3), primigravidity ( OR = 3.2 ), inter-delivery interval of 2 years or less ( OR = 35.2 ), twin pregnancy (OR = 3.2), HIV infection ( OR = 1.5 ), and malaria parasitaemia (OR=2.2).
Conclusion: The application of risk modifying practices and the institution of programmes that would enhance the economic status of women would help reduce the incidence of anaemia and improve nutrition. Improvement in the quality and availability of family planning would increase inter delivery interval while early and appropriate use of antenatal care would provide focus on primigravidae and women with multiple pregnancy and also help in identification of patients HIV sero- status for effective management. Moreover, early institution of intermittent preventive therapy for malaria especially in primigravidae, sustained rollback malaria programme including use of insecticide treated nets would all contribute significantly to the reduction of pregnancy anaemia and indirectly maternal mortality.
Keywords: Anaemia, pregnancy, antenatal care, risk factors.