Cross-sectional study of antioxidant status in normotensive and hypertensive pregnancy
Objectives: The study measured the concentrations of antioxidants in women during pregnancy and the Post Partum Period (PPP) with a view to investigating their role in the aetiology of pregnancy induced hypertension
Study Design: Informed consent was obtained from 105 women who were divided into three groups: 15 age and parity matched normotensive non-pregnant (control group), 45 normotensive and 45 hypertensive pregnant women. The two groups of pregnant women were divided into three groups of 15 each and studied in the second and third trimesters and PPP respectively. Venous blood was obtained from all the participants for measurements of some antioxidants (uric acid, albumin, catalase and vitamin C). Data were analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistical methods.
Results: The results show that the mean concentrations of catalase, albumin, vitamin C and uric acid for the control were 3.1 ± 0.18 ì/l, 46.6 ± 6.6 g/l, 0.38 ± 0.01 mg/dl and 0.16 ± 0.03 mmol/l respectively. The mean
concentration of all antioxidants except uric acid were significantly lower during pregnancy when compared with controls (t= 2.06; p<0.01). In the normotensive group of pregnant women, vitamin C was the only antioxidant that showed significant higher concentration when the second trimester concentration and third trimester concentration were compared (t=2.06; p<0.05). Uric acid levels were significantly higher (t=2.06; p<0.05) and catalase and vitamin C levels were significantly lower in the hypertensive group during the 2nd and 3rd trimesters (t=2.06; p<0.05). There was a tendency for all antioxidant concentrations to return to normal values during the PPP in the normotensive group; however in the hypertensive group, uric acid levels remained significantly higher
Conclusion: In conclusion this study showed that pregnancy generally reduced the concentration of antioxidants but vitamin C levels were higher in late pregnancy of normotensive women. Therefore higher levels of vitamin C may protect against PIH.
Keywords: Antioxidants, Normal Pregnancy, Pregnancy Induced Hypertension (PIH).
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