Maternal hematocrit status affecting pregnancy outcome
Low and high maternal hematocrit can influence outcome of pregnancy.Anemia is frequently observed during pregnancy. This study was performed to determine the maternal hematocrit status affecting pregnancy outcome in babol, northern Iran. The present cohort control study was conducted from Dec 2001 to Dec 2002 and comprised 609 randomly selected pregnant women who attended Yahyanejad Hospital for antenatal care and delivery. Women with hemoglobinopathies such as thalassemia were excluded from the study. Maternal characteristics including hematocrit values were recorded at the first antenatal care visit when 3ml blood collected from each woman was sent to the laboratory for CBC. Anemia marked by hematocrit<34% in the first trimester was associated with a significantly increasing risk of low birth weight (<2500 g) and preterm delievery which was indicated by the gestational age of less than 37 weeks. High hematocrit values (>40%) did not increase the risk of low birth weight or preterm delivery. The risk of low Apgar score, operative deliveries and admittance to the newborn intensive care unit (NICU) were significantly increased in women with high and low hematocrit. Thus pregnant women with abnormal hematocrit are at high risk and due awareness is required of how to prevent complication and dismal outcome of pregnancies by special clinical care.