Zinc supplementation in pregnancy

  • Review
  • Intervention


  • K Mahomed

A/Prof Kassam Mahomed, Director, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Toowoomba Base Hospital, Pechey Street, Toowoomba, Queensland, 4350, AUSTRALIA. kassam_mahomed@health.qld.gov.au.



It has been suggested that low serum zinc levels may be associated with abnormalities of labour, although this has not yet been established.


The objective of this review was to assess the effect of zinc supplementation in pregnancy on maternal and fetal mortality and morbidity.

Search strategy

The Cochrane Pregnancy and Childbirth Group trials register was searched.

Selection criteria

Acceptably controlled trials of zinc supplementation in pregnancy.

Data collection and analysis

One reviewer assessed trial quality and extracted data. Study authors were contacted for additional information.

Main results

Seven trials were included. Apart from possible reduction in induction of labour, caesarean section and preterm delivery in the supplemented group, no other differences were detected between groups of women who had zinc supplementation and those who had either placebo or no zinc during pregnancy.

Authors' conclusions

There is insufficient evidence to evaluate fully the affect of zinc supplementation during pregnancy. The possible beneficial effects on preterm delivery need to be evaluated in further trials.