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Effects of routine oral iron supplementation with or without folic acid for women during pregnancy

  1. Juan Pablo Peña-Rosas2,*,
  2. Fernando E Viteri3

Editorial Group: Cochrane Pregnancy and Childbirth Group

Published Online: 19 JUL 2006

Assessed as up-to-date: 17 APR 2006

DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD004736.pub2


How to Cite

Peña-Rosas JP, Viteri FE. Effects of routine oral iron supplementation with or without folic acid for women during pregnancy. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2006, Issue 3. Art. No.: CD004736. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD004736.pub2.

Author Information

  1. 2

    U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), International Micronutrient Malnutrition Prevention and Control Program (IMMPaCt), Atlanta, GA, USA

  2. 3

    Children's Hospital and Oakland Research Institute, Oakland, CA, USA

*Juan Pablo Peña-Rosas, Reduction of Micronutrient Malnutrition Unit, Department of Nutrition for Health and Development, World Health Organization, 20 Avenue Appia, Geneva 27, 1211, Switzerland. penarosasj@who.int.

Publication History

  1. Publication Status: Edited
  2. Published Online: 19 JUL 2006

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This is not the most recent version of the article. View current version (12 DEC 2012)

References

References to studies included in this review

  1. References to studies included in this review
  2. References to studies excluded from this review
  3. References to studies awaiting assessment
  4. References to ongoing studies
  5. Additional references
  6. References to other published versions of this review
Barton 1994 {published data only}
  • Barton DPJ, Joy MT, Lappin TRJ, Afrasiabi M, Morel JG, O'Riordan J, et al. Maternal erythropoietin in singleton pregnancies: a randomized trial on the effect of oral hematinic supplementation. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 1994;170:896-901.
Batu 1976 {published data only}
  • Batu AT, Toe T, Pe H, Nyunt KK. A prophylactic trial of iron and folic acid supplements in pregnant Burmese women. Israel Journal of Medical Sciences 1976;12:1410-7.
Butler 1968 {published data only}
  • Butler EB. The effect of iron and folic acid on red cell and plasma volume in pregnancy. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology of the British Commonwealth 1968;75:497-510.
Buytaert 1983 {published data only}
  • Buytaert G, Wallenburg HCS, Van Eijk HG, Buytaert P. Iron supplementation during pregnancy. European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology 1983;15:11-6.
Chanarin 1971 {published data only}
  • Chanarin I, Rothman D. Further observations on the relation between iron and folate status in pregnancy. BMJ 1971;2:81-4.
Charoenlarp 1988 {published data only}
  • Charoenlarp P, Dhanamitta S, Kaewvichit R, Silprasert A, Suwanaradd C, Na-Nakorn S, et al. A WHO collaborative study on iron supplementation in Burma and in Thailand. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1988;47(2):280-97.
Chew 1996a {published and unpublished data}
  • Chew F, Torun B, Viteri FE. Comparison of weekly and daily iron supplementation to pregnant women in Guatemala (supervised and unsupervised). FASEB Journal 1996;10:A4221.
  • Chew F, Torun B, Viteri FE. Individual patient data (as supplied 15 January 2004). Data on file.
  • Chew F, Torún B, Viteri FE. Comparison of daily and weekly iron supplementation in pregnant women with and without direct supervision [Comparación de la suplementación diaria o semanal de hierro en mujeres embarazadas con y sin supervisión directa]. XI Congreso Latino Americano de Nutrición, Libro de Resumenes. Guatemala: SLAN, 1997:94.
Chew 1996b {published and unpublished data}
  • Chew F, Torun B, Viteri FE. Comparison of weekly and daily iron supplementation to pregnant women in Guatemala (supervised and unsupervised). FASEB Journal 1996;10:A4221.
  • Chew F, Torun B, Viteri FE. Individual patient data (as supplied 15 January 2004). Data on file.
  • Chew F, Torún B, Viteri FE. Comparison of daily and weekly iron supplementation in pregnant women with and without direct supervision [Comparación de la suplementación diaria o semanal de hierro en mujeres embarazadas con y sin supervisión directa]. XI Congreso Latino Americano de Nutrición, Libro de Resumenes. Guatemala: SLAN, 1997:94.
Chisholm 1966 {published data only}
  • Chisholm M. A controlled clinical trial of prophylactic folic acid and iron in pregnancy. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology of the British Commonwealth 1966;73:191-6.
Cogswell 2003 {published and unpublished data}
  • Cogswell ME, Parvanta I, Ickes L, Yip R, Brittenham GM. Individual patient data (as supplied 4 February 2004). Data on file.
  • Cogswell ME, Parvanta I, Ickes L, Yip R, Brittenham GM. Iron supplementation during pregnancy, anemia, and birth weight: a randomized controlled trial. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2003;78(4):773-81.
  • Cogswell ME, Parvanta I, Yip R, Brittenham GM. Iron supplementation during pregnancy for initially non-anemic, iron replete women - decreased prevalence of low birth weight infants. Report of the 2001 INACG Symposium. Why iron is important and what to do about it: a new perspective. Washington D.C.: ILSI Human Nutrition Institute, 2002; Vol. 1 Abstract 7:42.
  • Cogswell ME, Parvanta I, Yip R, Brittenham GM. Low iron during pregnancy increases the risk of delivering preterm or small infants. Report of the 2001 INACG Symposium. Why iron is important and what to do about it: a new perspective. Washington DC: ILSI Human Nutrition Institute, 2002; Vol. 1 Abstract 8:42.
De Benaze 1989 {published data only}
  • De Benaze C, Galan P, Wainer R, Hercberg S. Prevention of iron deficient anemia during pregnancy by early iron supplementation: a controlled trial. Revue d Epidemiologie et de Sante Publique 1989;37:109-18.
Ekstrom 2002 {published and unpublished data}
  • Ekstrom EC. Personal communication 12 April 2004.
  • Ekstrom EC, Hyder SM, Chowdhury AM, Chowdhury SA, Lonnerdal B, Habicht JP, et al. Efficacy and trial effectiveness of weekly and daily iron supplementation among pregnant women in rural Bangladesh: disentangling the issues. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2002;76(6):1392-400.
  • Hyder SM, Persson LA, Chowdhury AM, Ekstrom EC. Do side-effects reduce compliance to iron supplementation? A study of daily- and weekly-dose regimens in pregnancy. Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition 2002;2:175-9.
  • Hyder SM, Persson LA, Chowdhury R, Lonnerdal B, Ekstrom EC. Impact of daily and weekly iron supplementation to women in pregnancy and puerperium on haemoglobin and iron status six weeks postpartum: results from a community-based study in Bangladesh. Scandinavian Journal of Nutrition 2003;47(1):19-25.
Eskeland 1997 {published and unpublished data}
  • Eskeland B. Database provided by authors (as supplied 22 February 2004). Data on file.
  • Eskeland B, Malterud K, Ulvik RJ, Hunskaar S. Iron supplementation in pregnancy: is less enough? A randomized, placebo controlled trial of low dose iron supplementation with and without heme iron. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 1997;76(9):822-8.
Hankin 1963 {published data only}
  • Hankin ME. The value of iron supplementation during pregnancy. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 1963;3:111-8.
  • Hankin ME, Symonds EM. Body weight, diet and pre-eclamptic toxaemia in pregnancy. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 1962;4:156-60.
Holly 1955 {published data only}
  • Holly RG. Anemia in pregnancy. Obstetrics & Gynecology 1955;5:562-9.
Hood 1960 {published data only}
  • Hood WE, Bond WL. Iron deficiency prophylaxis during pregnancy. Obstetrics & Gynecology 1960;16:82-4.
Kerr 1958 {published data only}
  • Kerr DNS, Davidson S. The prophylaxis of iron-deficiency anemia in pregnancy. Lancet 1958;2:483-8.
Liu 1996 {published and unpublished data}
  • Liu XN, Liu PY. The effectiveness of weekly iron supplementation regimen in improving the iron status of Chinese children and pregnant women. Biomedical and Environmental Sciences 1996;9:341-7.
  • Liu XN, Liu PY, Viteri FE. Individual patient data (as supplied December 2003). Data on file.
Makrides 2003 {published and unpublished data}
  • Makrides M. Personal communication April 12 2004.
  • Makrides M, Crowther CA, Gibson RA, Gibson RS, Skeaff CM. Efficacy and tolerability of low-dose iron supplements during pregnancy: a randomised controlled trial. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2003;78:145-53.
  • Makrides M, Crowther CA, Gibson RA, Gibson RS, Skeaff CM. Low-dose iron supplements in pregnancy prevent iron deficiency at the end of pregnancy and during the post-partum period: the results of a randomised controlled trial [abstract]. Perinatal Society of Australia and New Zealand 7th Annual Congress; 2003 March 9-12; Tasmania, Australia. 2003:P99.
Menendez 1994 {published data only}
  • Menendez C, Todd J, Alonso PL, Francis N, Lulat S, Ceesay S, et al. The effects or iron supplementation during pregnancy, given by traditional birth attendants, on the prevalence of anaemia and malaria. Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 1994;88:590-3.
  • Menendez C, Todd J, Alonso PL, Francis N, Lulat S, Ceesay S, et al. The response to iron supplementation of pregnant women with the haemoglobin genotype AA or AS. Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 1995;89(3):289-92.
Milman 1991 {published data only}
  • Milman N, Agger AO, Nielsen OJ. Iron supplementation during pregnancy. Effect on iron status markers, serum erythropoietin and human placental lactogen. A placebo controlled study in 207 Danish women. Danish Medical Bulletin 1991;38(6):471-6.
  • Milman N, Agger AO, Nielson OJ. Iron status markers and serum erythropoietin in 120 mothers and newborn infants: effect of iron supplementation in normal pregnancy. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 1994;73:200-4.
  • Milman N, Byg KE, Agger AO. Hemoglobin and erythrocyte indices during normal pregnancy and postpartum in 206 women with and without iron supplementation. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 2000;79(2):89-98.
  • Milman N, Graudal N, Agger AO. Iron status markers during pregnancy. No relationship between levels at the beginning of the second trimester, prior to delivery and post partum. Journal of Internal Medicine 1995;237:261-7.
  • Milman N, Graudal N, Nielsen OJ, Agger AO. Serum erythropoietin during normal pregnancy: relationship to hemoglobin and iron status markers and impact of iron supplementation in a longitudinal, placebo-controlled study on 118 women. International Journal of Hematology 1997;66(2):159-68.
  • Milman N, Graudal NA, Agger AO. Iron status markers during normal pregnancy in 120 women. No clinically useful relationship between levels in the second trimester, later in pregnancy, and post partum. Ugeskrift for Laeger 1995;157:6571-5.
Ortega-Soler 1998 {unpublished data only}
  • Ortega-Soler CR, Langini SH, Fleishman S, Lopez LB, Garcia M, Guntin R, et al. Iron nutritional status in pregnant women with and without iron supplementation [Estado nutricional con respecto al hierro (Fe) en gestantes con y sin suplementacion]. Personal communication 1998.
Paintin 1966 {published and unpublished data}
  • Paintin DB, Thompson AM, Hytten FE. Personal communication 1986.
  • Paintin DB, Thomson AM, Hytten FE. Iron and haemoglobin level in pregnancy. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology of the British Commonwealth 1966;73:181-90.
Pita Martin 1999 {published and unpublished data}
  • Pita Martin de Portela ML. Personal communication March 22 2004.
  • Pita Martin de Portela ML, Langini SH, Fleischman S, Garcia M, Lopez LB, Guntin R, et al. Effect of iron supplementation and its frequency during pregnancy. Medicina 1999;59:430-6.
Preziosi 1997 {published data only}
  • Preziosi P, Prual A, Galan P, Daouda H, Boureima H, Hercberg S. Effect of iron supplementation on the iron status of pregnant women: consequences for newborns. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1997;66:1178-82.
Pritchard 1958 {published data only}
  • Pritchard J, Hunt C. A comparison of the hematologic responses following the routine prenatal administration of intramuscular and oral iron. Surgery Gynecology and Obstetrics 1958;106:516-8.
Puolakka 1980 {published data only}
  • Puolakka J, Janne O, Pakarinen A, Jarvinen PA, Vihko R. Serum ferritin as a measure of iron stores during and after normal pregnancy with and without iron supplement. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 1980;95:43-51.
Ridwan 1996 {published and unpublished data}
  • Ridwan E, Schultink W, Dillon D, Gross R. Effects of weekly iron supplementation on pregnant indonesian women are similar to those of daily supplementation. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1996;63(6):884-90.
  • Schultink W, Ridwan E, Dillon D, Gross R. Individual patient data (as supplied 12 January 2004). Data on file.
Robinson 1998 {published and unpublished data}
  • Robinson JS. Individual patient data (as supplied 11 March 2004). Data on file.
  • Robinson JS. Working with traditional birth attendants to improve iron tablet utilization by pregnant women. MotherCare Technical Working Paper #7. Arlington, VA 1998.
  • Robinson JS, Sopacua J, Napitapulu J. Using traditional birth attendants to improve iron tablet utilization by pregnant women. Maluku Province, Indonesia. Draft paper. Mother Care Project. Project Concern International San Diego CA 1999.
  • Robinson JS, Yip R. Weekly versus daily iron tablet supplementation in pregnant women in Indonesia. Draft paper 2000.
Romslo 1983 {published data only}
  • Romslo I, Haram K, Sagen N, Augensen K. Iron requirements in normal pregnancy as assessed by serum ferritin, serum transferrin saturation and erythrocyte protoporphyrin determinations. British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 1983;90:101-7.
Svanberg 1975 {published data only}
  • Svanberg B, Arvidsson B, Norrby A, Rybo G, Solvell L. Absorption of supplemental iron during pregnancy - a longitudinal study with repeated bone marrow studies and absorption measurements. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 1975;48:87-108.
Taylor 1982 {published data only}
  • Taylor DJ, Mallen C, McDougall N, Lind T. Personal communication 1982.
  • Taylor DJ, Mallen C, McDougall N, Lind T. Effect of iron supplementation on serum ferritin levels during and after pregnancy. British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 1982;89:1011-7.
Tura 1989 {published data only}
  • Tura S, Carenza L, Baccarani M, Bagnara M, Bocci A, Bottone P, et al. Therapy and iron supplements with ferritin during pregnancy. A randomized prospective study of 458 cases. Recenti Progessi in Medicina 1989;80:607-14.
Van Eijk 1978 {published data only}
  • Van Eijk HG, Kroos MJ, Hoogendoorn GA, Wallenburg HC. Serum ferritin and iron stores during pregnancy. Clinica Chimica Acta 1978;83(1-2):81-91.
Wallenburg 1983 {published data only}
  • Buytaert G, Wallenburg HCS, Van Eijk HG, Buytaert P. Iron supplementation during pregnancy. European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology 1983;15:11-6.
  • Wallenburg HCS, Van Eijk HG. Effect of oral iron supplementation during pregnancy on maternal and fetal iron status. Journal of Perinatal Medicine 1984;12:7-12.
Willoughby 1967 {published data only}
  • Willoughby MLN. An investigation of folic acid requirements in pregnancy. II. British Journal of Haematology 1967;13:503-9.
Wills 1947 {published data only}
  • Wills L, Hill G, Bingham K, Miall M, Wrigley J. Haemoglobin levels in pregnancy: the effect of the rationing scheme and routine administration of iron. British Journal of Nutrition 1947;1:126-38.
Winichagoon 2003 {unpublished data only}
  • Winichagoon P, Lertmullikaporn N, Chitcumroonchokechai C, Thamrongwarangkul T. Daily versus weekly iron supplementation to pregnant women in rural northeast Thailand. Personal communication 2003.
Young 2000 {published data only}
  • Young MW, Lupafya E, Kapenda E, Bobrow EA. The effectiveness of weekly iron supplementation in pregnant women of rural northern Malawi. Tropical Doctor 2000;30(2):84-8.
Yu 1998 {published and unpublished data}
  • Yu KH, Yoon, JS. Individual patient data (as supplied 11 March 2004). Data on file.
  • Yu KH, Yoon JS. The effect of weekly iron supplementation on iron and zinc nutritional status in pregnant women. Korean Journal of Nutrition 1998;31(8):1270-82.

References to studies excluded from this review

  1. References to studies included in this review
  2. References to studies excluded from this review
  3. References to studies awaiting assessment
  4. References to ongoing studies
  5. Additional references
  6. References to other published versions of this review
Aaseth 2001 {published data only}
  • Aaseth J, Thomassen Y, Ellingsen DG, Stoa-Birketvedt G. Prophylactic iron supplementation in pregnant women in Norway. Journal of Trace Elements in Medicine & Biology 2001;15(2-3):167-74.
Abel 2000 {published data only}
  • Abel R, Rajaratnam J, Kalaimani A, Kirubakaran S. Can iron status be improved in each of the three trimesters? A community base study. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2000;54:490-3.
Afifi 1978 {published data only}
  • Afifi AM. Plexafer-F in the management of latent iron deficiency in pregnancy. Journal of International Medical Research 1978;6:34-40.
Babior 1985 {published data only}
  • Babior BM, Peters WA, Briden PM, Cetrulo CL. Pregnant women's absorption of iron from prenatal supplements. Journal of Reproductive Medicine 1985;30:355-7.
Bergsjo 1987 {published data only}
  • Bergsjo P. The effects of iron supplementation in pregnancy. Personal communication 1987.
Blot 1980 {published data only}
  • Blot I, Tchernia G, Chenayer M, Hill C, Hajeri H, Leluc R. Iron deficiency in the pregnant woman. Its repercussions on the newborn. The influence of systematic iron treatment. Journal de Gynecologie, Obstetrique et Biologie de la Reproduction 1980;9:489-95.
Brown 1972 {published data only}
  • Brown GM, Dawson DW. Prevention of anaemia in pregnancy. Current Medical Research and Opinion 1972;1:93-9.
Burslem 1968 {published data only}
  • Burslem RW, Poller L, Wacks H. A trial of slow release ferrous sulphate (Ferrogradumet) in prevention of iron deficiency in pregnancy. Acta Haematologica 1968;40:200-4.
Cantlie 1971 {published data only}
  • Cantlie GSD, De Leeuw NKM, Lowenstein L. Iron and folate nutrition in a group of private obstetrical patients. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1971;24:637-41.
Carrasco 1962 {published data only}
  • Carrasco E, Jose F, Samson G, Germar E, Padilla B. Effect of D-sorbitol on the absorption and transfer of nutrients from mother to fetus. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1962;11:533-6.
Casanueva 2003a {unpublished data only}
  • Casanueva E. Weekly iron-folate (Fe-fol) supplementation during pregnancy in Mexican women. Personal communication 2003.
  • Casanueva E, Viteri FE, Mares-Galindo M, Meza-Camacho C, Loria A, Schnaas L, et al. Weekly iron as a safe alternative to daily supplementation for nonanemic pregnant women. Archives of Medical Research 2006 in press.
Chanarin 1965 {published data only}
  • Chanarin I, Rothman D, Berry V. Iron deficiency and its relation to folic acid status in pregnancy: results of a clinical trial. BMJ 1965;1:480-5.
Chawla 1995 {published data only}
  • Chawla PK, Puri R. Impact of nutritional supplements on hematological profile of pregnant women. Indian Pediatrics 1995;32:876-80.
Christian 2003 {published data only}
  • Christian P, Khatry SK, Katz J, Pradhan EK, LeClerq SC, Shrestha SR, et al. Effects of alternative maternal micronutrient supplements on low birth weight in rural Nepal: double blind randomised community trial. BMJ 2003;326(7389):571.
Dawson 1987 {published data only}
  • Dawson EB, McGanity WJ. Protection of maternal iron stores in pregnancy. Journal of Reproductive Medicine 1987;32(6 Suppl):478-87.
Dommisse 1983 {published data only}
  • Dommisse J, Bell DJH, Du Toit ED, Midgley V, Cohen M. Iron-storage deficiency and iron supplementation in pregnancy. South African Medical Journal 1983;64:1047-51.
Edgar 1956 {published data only}
  • Edgar W, Rice HM. Administration of iron in antenatal clinics. Lancet 1956;1:599-602.
Ekstrom 1996 {published data only}
  • Ekstrom EM, Kavishe FP, Habicht J, Frongillo EA, Rasmussen KM, Hemed L. Adherence to iron supplementation during pregnancy in Tanzania: determinants and hematologic consequences. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1996;64:368-74.
Fenton 1977 {published data only}
  • Fenton V, Cavill I, Fisher J. Iron stores in pregnancy. British Journal of Haematology 1977;37:145-9.
Fleming 1974 {published data only}
  • Fleming AF, Martin JD, Hahnel R, Westlake AJ. Effects of iron and folic acid antenatal supplements on maternal haematology and fetal wellbeing. Medical Journal of Australia 1974;2:429-36.
Fleming 1986 {published data only}
  • Fleming AF. Anaemia in pregnancy in the Guinea Savanna of Nigeria. In: Ludwig H, Thomsen K editor(s). Gynecology and Obstetrics. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 1986:122-4.
  • Fleming AF, Ghatoura GBS, Harrison KA, Briggs ND, Dunn DT. The prevention of anaemia in pregnancy in primigravidae in the guinea savanna of Nigeria. Annals of Tropical Medicine and Parasitology 1986;80:211-33.
  • Harrison KA, Fleming AF, Briggs ND, Rossiter CE. Child-bearing, health and social priorities: a survey of 22,774 consecutive hospital births in Zaria, Northern Nigeria. 5. Growth during pregnancy in Nigerian teenage primigravidae. British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 1985;92(5):32-9.
Fletcher 1971 {published data only}
  • Fletcher J, Gurr A, Fellingham F, Prankerd T, Brant H, Menzies D. The value of folic acid supplements in pregnancy. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology of the British Empire 1971;78:781-5.
Foulkes 1982 {published data only}
  • Foulkes J, Goldie DJ. The use of ferritin to assess the need for iron supplements in pregnancy. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 1982;3:11-6.
Freire 1989 {published data only}
  • Freire WB. Hemoglobin as a predictor of response to iron therapy and its use in screening and prevalence estimates. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1989;50:1442-9.
Gomber 2002 {published data only}
  • Gomber S, Agarwal KN, Mahajan C, Agarwal N. Impact of daily versus weekly hematinic supplementation on anemia in pregnant women. Indian Pediatrics 2002;39(4):339-46.
Goonewardene 2001 {published data only}
  • Goonewardene M, Liyanage C, Fernando R. Intermittent oral iron supplementation during pregnancy. Ceylon Medical Journal 2001;46(4):132-5.
Gringras 1982 {published data only}
  • Gringras M. A comparison of two combined iron-folic acid preparations in the prevention of anaemia in pregnancy. Journal of International Medical Research 1982;10:268-70.
Groner 1986 {published data only}
  • Groner JA, Holtzman NA, Charney E, Mellits ED. A randomized trial of oral iron on tests of short-term memory and attention span in young pregnant women. Journal of Adolescent Health Care 1986;7:44-8.
Guldholt 1991 {published data only}
  • Guldholt IS, Trolle BG, Hvidman LE. Iron supplementation during pregnancy. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 1991;70:9-12.
Hampel 1974 {published data only}
  • Hampel K, Roetz R. Influence of a long-time substitution with a folate-iron combination in pregnancy on serum folate and serum iron and on hematological parameters. Geburtshilfe und Frauenheilkunde 1974;34:409-17.
Hawkins 1987 {published data only}
  • Hawkins DF. Relative efficacy of sustained release iron and iron with folic acid treatment in pregnancy. Personal communication 1987.
Hemminki 1989 {published data only (unpublished sought but not used)}
  • Hemminki E, Merilainen J. Long-term effects of iron prophylaxis during pregnancy. International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics 1994;46:3.
  • Hemminki E, Merilainen J. Long-term follow-up of mothers and their infants in a randomized trial on iron prophylaxis during pregnancy. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 1995;173:205-9.
  • Hemminki E, Rimpela U. A randomized comparison of routine vs selective iron supplementation during pregnancy. Journal of the American College of Nutrition 1991;10:3-10.
  • Hemminki E, Rimpela U. Iron supplementation, maternal packed cell volume, and fetal growth. Archives of Disease in Childhood 1991;66:422-5.
  • Hemminki E, Rimpela U, Yla-Outinen A. Iron prophylaxis during pregnancy and infections. International Journal of Vitamin and Nutrition Research 1991;61:370-1.
  • Hemminki E, Uski A, Koponen P, Rimpela U. Iron supplementation during pregnancy - experiences of a randomized trial relying on health service personnel. Controlled Clinical Trials 1989;10:290-8.
Hermsdorf 1986 {published data only}
  • Hermsdorf J, Ring D, Retzke U, Bruschke G. Oral iron prophylaxis during pregnancy. A longitudinal study about hematologic and clinical parameters in treated and non-treated pregnant women. Proceedings of 10th European Congress of Perinatal Medicine; 1986 August 12-16; Leipzig, Germany. 1986:84.
Horgan 1966 {published data only}
  • Horgan M, Woodliff M, Mangion J. A combined iron and folic-acid preparation in the prophylaxis of anaemia of pregnancy. Practitioner 1966;197:683-6.
Iyengar 1970 {published data only}
  • Iyengar L, Apte SV. Prophylaxis of anemia in pregnancy. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1970;23:725-30.
Kann 1988 {published data only}
  • Kann J, Lyon JA, Bon C. Availability of iron from four prenatal multivitamin/multimineral products. Clinical Therapeutics 1988;10:287-93.
Madan 1999 {published data only}
  • Madan N, Prasannaraj P, Rusia U, Sundaram KR, Nath LM, Sood SK. Monitoring oral iron therapy with protoporphyrin/heme ratios in pregnant women. Annals of Hematology 1999;78(6):279-83.
McKenna 2002 {published data only (unpublished sought but not used)}
  • McKenna D, Spence D, Dornan J. A randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial investigating the place of spatone-iron plus as a prophylaxis against iron deficiency in pregnancy [abstract]. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 2002;22(2 Suppl):S45.
  • McKenna D, Spence D, Haggan SE, McCrum E, Dornan JC, Lappin TR. A randomized trial investigating an iron-rich natural mineral water as a prophlylaxis against iron deficiency in pregnancy. Clinical and Laboratory Haematology 2003;25:99-103.
Menon 1962 {published data only}
  • Menon MKK, Rajan L. Prophylaxis of anaemia in pregnancy. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology of the British Commonwealth 1962;12:382-9.
Morgan 1961 {published data only}
  • Morgan EH. Plasma-iron and haemoglobin levels in pregnancy. Lancet 1961;1:9-12.
  • Morgan EH. Plasma-iron and haemoglobin levels in pregnancy. Personal communication January 19 1987.
Morrison 1977 {published data only}
  • Morrison J, Bell J, Chang AMZ, Larkin PK. A comparative trial of haematinic supplements in pregnancy. Medical Journal of Australia 1977;1:482-4.
Mumtaz 2000 {published data only}
  • Mumtaz Z, Shahab S, Butt N, Rab MA, DeMuynck A. Daily iron supplementation is more effective than twice weekly iron supplementation in pregnant women in Pakistan in a randomized double-blind clinical trial. Journal of Nutrition 2000;130(11):2697-702.
Nogueira 2002 {published data only}
  • Nogueira NDN, Macedo ADS, Parente JV, Cozzolino SMF. Nutritional profile of newborns of adolescent mothers supplemented with iron, in different concentrations, zinc and pholic acid. Revista de Nutricao 2002;15:193-200.
  • Nogueira Ndo N, Parente JV, Cozzolino SM. Changes in plasma zinc and folic acid concentrations in pregnant adolescents submitted to different supplementation regimens. Cadernos de Saude Publica 2003;19(1):155-60.
Pena-Rosas 2003 {published data only}
  • Pena-Rosas JP, Nesheim M, Garcia-Casal MN, Crompton DWT, Sanjur D, Viteri FE, et al. Intermittent iron supplementation regimens are able to maintain safe maternal hemoglobin concentrations during pregnancy in venezuela. Journal of Nutrition 2004;134(5):1099-104.
Quintero 2004 {unpublished data only}
  • Quintero Gutierrez AG, Gonzalez Rosendo G, Cedillo Espana F, Rivera-Dommarco J. Single weekly iron supplementation in pregnant women. Personal communication February 17 2004.
Ramakrishnan 2003 {published data only}
  • Ramakrishnan U, Gonzalez-Cossio T, Neufeld LM, Rivera J, Martorell R. Multiple micronutrient supplementation during pregnancy does not lead to greater infant birth size than does iron-only supplementation: a randomized controlled trial in a semirural community in mexico. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2003;77(3):720-5.
Rayado 1997 {published data only}
  • Rayado B, Carrillo JA, Fernandez-Esteban JA, Gomez-Cedillo A, Martin M, Coronel P. A comparative study of 2 ferrous proteins in the prevention of iron deficiency anaemia during pregnancy. Clinica e Investigacion En Ginecologia y Obstetricia 1997;24:46-50.
Reddaiah 1989 {published data only}
  • Reddaiah VP, Raj PP, Ramachandran K, Nath LM, Sood SK, Madan N, et al. Supplementary iron dose in pregnancy anemia prophylaxis. Indian Journal of Pediatrics 1989;56:109-14.
Roztocil 1994 {published data only}
  • Roztocil A, Charvatova M, Harastova L, Zahradkova J, Studenik P, Sochorova V, et al. Anti-anemia therapy with prophylactic administration of fe2+ in normal pregnancy and its effect on prepartum hematologic parameters in the mother and neonate. Ceska Gynekologie 1994;59(3):130-3.
Rybo 1971 {published data only}
  • Rybo G, Solvell L. Side-effect studies on a new sustained release iron preparation. Scandinavian Journal of Hematology 1971;8(4):257-64.
Sandstad 2003 {published data only}
  • Sandstad B, Borch-Iohnson B, Andersen GM, Dahl-Jorgensen B, Froysa I, Leslie C, et al. Selective iron supplementation based on serum ferritin values early in pregnancy: are the Norwegian recommendations satisfactory?. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 2003;82:537-42.
Shatrugna 1999 {published data only}
  • Shatrugna V, Raman L, Kailash U, Balakrishna N, Rao KV. Effect of dose and formulation on iron tolerance in pregnancy. National Medical Journal of India 1999;12(1):18-20.
Siega-Riz 2004 {published data only}
  • Bodnar LM, Davidian M, Siega-Riz AM, Tsiatis AA. Marginal structural models for analyzing causal effects of time-dependent treatments: an application in perinatal epidemiology. American Journal of Epidemiology 2004;159(10):926-34.
  • Siega-Riz A, Hartzema A, Turnbull C, Thorp JJ, McDonald T. A trial of selective versus routine iron supplementation to prevent third trimester anemia during pregnancy [abstract]. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 2001; Vol. 185, issue 6 Suppl:S119.
Simmons 1993 {published data only}
  • Simmons WK, Cook JD, Bingham KC, Thomas M, Jackson J, Jackson M, et al. Evaluation of a gastric delivery system for iron supplementation in pregnancy. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1993;58:622-6.
Sjostedt 1977 {published data only}
  • Sjostedt JE, Manner P, Nummi S, Ekenved G. Oral iron prophylaxis during pregnancy - a comparative study on different dosage regimens. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 1977;66:3-9.
Sood 1979 {published data only}
  • Sood SK, Ramachandran K, Rani K, Ramalingaswami V, Mathan VI, Ponniah J, et al. WHO sponsored collaborative studies on nutritional anaemia in India. The effect of parenteral iron administration in the control of anaemia of pregnancy. British Journal of Nutrition 1979;42:399-406.
Steer 1992 {published data only}
  • Steer PJ. Trial to assess the effects of iron and folate supplementation on pregnancy outcome [trial abandoned]. Personal communication 1992.
Stone 1975 {published data only}
  • Stone M, Elder MG. The relative merits of a slow-release and a standard iron preparation during pregnancy. Current Medical Research and Opinion 1975;3:469-72.
Suharno 1993 {published data only}
  • Suharno D, West CE, Karyadi D, Hautvast JGA. Supplementation with vitamin A and iron for nutritional anaemia in pregnant women in West Java, Indonesia. Lancet 1993;342:1325-8.
Tampakoudis 1996 {published data only}
  • Tampakoudis P, Tantanassis T, Tsatalas K, Lazaridis E, Tsalikis T, Venetis C, et al. A randomized trial on the effect of oral supplementation with iron protein succinylate in singleton pregnancies. The role of maternal erythropoietin as a marker. Prenatal and Neonatal Medicine 1996;1 Suppl 1:181.
Tan 1995 {published data only}
  • Tan CH, Ng KB. The effect of oral iron on the haemoglobin concentration during the second half of pregnancy. 27th British Congress of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 1995 July 4-7; Dublin, Ireland. Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists, 1995:101.
Thane-Toe 1982 {published data only}
  • Thane-Toe, Thein-Than. The effects of oral iron supplementation on ferritin levels in pregnant Burmese women. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1982;35:95-9.
Tholin 1995 {published data only}
  • Tholin K, Sandstrom B, Palm R, Hallmans G. Changes in blood manganese levels during pregnancy in iron supplemented and non supplemented women. Journal of Trace Elements in Medicine and Biology 1995;9(1):13-7.
Thomsen 1993 {published data only}
  • Thomsen JK, Prien-Larsen JC, Devantier A, Fogh-Andersen N. Low dose iron supplementation does not cover the need for iron during pregnancy. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 1993;72:93-8.
Vogel 1963 {published data only}
  • Vogel L, Steingold L, Suchet J. Iron therapy in the treatment of anaemia in pregnancy. Lancet 1963;1:1296-9.
Willoughby 1966 {published data only}
  • Willoughby M, Jewell F. Investigation of folic acid requirements in pregnancy. BMJ 1966;2:1568-71.
Willoughby 1968 {published data only}
  • Willoughby MLN, Jewell FG. Folate status throughout pregnancy and in postpartum period. BMJ 1968;4:356-60.
Wu 1998 {published data only}
  • Wu Y, Weng L, Wu L. Clinical experience with iron supplementation in pregnancy. Chung-Hua Fu Chan Ko Tsa Chih [Chinese Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology] 1998;33(4):206-8.
Zittoun 1983 {published data only}
  • Zittoun J, Blot I, Hill C, Zittoun R, Papiernik E, Tchernia G. Iron supplements vs placebo during pregnancy: its effects on iron and folate status on mothers and newborns. Annals of Nutrition and Metabolism 1983;27:320-7.

References to studies awaiting assessment

  1. References to studies included in this review
  2. References to studies excluded from this review
  3. References to studies awaiting assessment
  4. References to ongoing studies
  5. Additional references
  6. References to other published versions of this review
Angeles-Agdeppa 2003 {published data only (unpublished sought but not used)}
  • Angeles-Agdeppa I. The effects of a community-based weekly iron-folate supplementation on hemoglobin and iron status of pregnant and non-pregnant women in Philippines. Meeting on weekly iron/folic acid supplementation for preventing anaemia in women of reproductive age in the Western Pacific Region Report. Manila, Philippines, February 2004.
Berger 2003 {published data only (unpublished sought but not used)}
  • Berger J. Effectiveness of weekly iron/folate supplementation on anaemia and iron status in women of reproductive age in rural Viet Nam. Meeting on weekly iron/folic acid supplementation for preventing anaemia in women of reproductive age in the Western Pacific Region Report. Manila, Philippines, February 2004.
Coelho 2000 {published data only}
  • Coelho K, Ramdas S, Pillai S. A comparative study of changes in haemoglobin with high and low dose iron preparations in pregnant women. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology of India 2000;50(2):37-9.
Dijkhuizen 2004 {published data only}
  • Dijkhuizen MA, Wieringa FT, West CE, Muhilal. Zinc plus beta-carotene supplementation of pregnant women is superior to beta-carotene supplementation alone in improving vitamin a status in both mothers and infants. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2004;80(5):1299-307.
Hosokawa 1989 {published data only}
  • Hosokawa K. Studies on anemia in pregnant women: therapeutic efficacy of iron monotherapy vs. combination therapy with iron and vitamin C. Rinsho to Kenkyu (The Japanese Journal of Clinical and Experimental Medicine) 1989;66(10):3329-35.
Kumar 2005 {published data only}
  • Kumar A, Jain S, Singh NP, Singh T. Oral versus high dose parenteral iron supplementation in pregnancy. International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics 2005;89:7-13.
Meier 2003 {published data only}
  • Meier PR, Nickerson HJ, Olson KA, Berg RL, Meyer JA. Prevention of iron deficiency anemia in adolescent and adult pregnancies. Clinical Medicine and Research 2003;1(1):29-36.
Milman 2005 {published data only}
  • Milman N, Bergholt T, Eriksen L, Byg KE, Graudal N, Pedersen P, et al. Iron prophylaxis during pregnancy - how much iron is needed? A randomized dose- response study of 20-80 mg ferrous iron daily in pregnant women. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 2005;84:238-47.
Mukhopadhyay 2004 {published data only}
  • Mukhopadhyay A, Bhatla N, Kriplani A, Agarwal N, Saxena R. Erythrocyte indices in pregnancy: effect of intermittent iron supplementatiom. National Medical Journal of India 2004;17(3):135-7.
  • Mukhopadhyay A, Bhatla N, Kriplani A, Pandey RM, Saxena R. Daily versus intermittent iron supplementation in pregnant women: hematological and pregnancy outcome. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Research 2004;30(6):409-17. [MEDLINE: 15566454]
Osrin 2005 {published data only}
  • Osrin D, Vaidya A, Shrestha Y, Baniya RB, Manandhar DS, Adhikari RK, et al. Effects of antenatal multiple micronutrient supplementation on birthweight and gestational duration in Nepal: double-blind, randomised controlled trial. Lancet 2005;365:955-62.
Payne 1968 {published data only}
  • Payne RW. Prophylaxis of anaemia in pregnancy. Journal of the Royal College of General Practitioners 1968;16:353-8.
Zutshi 2004 {published data only}
  • Zutshi V, Batra S, Ahmad SS, Khera N, Chauhan G, Gandhi G, et al. Injectable iron supplementation instead of oral therapy for antenatal care. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology of India 2004;54(1):37-8.

References to ongoing studies

  1. References to studies included in this review
  2. References to studies excluded from this review
  3. References to studies awaiting assessment
  4. References to ongoing studies
  5. Additional references
  6. References to other published versions of this review
Harvey 2004 {unpublished data only}
  • Harvey L. Evaluation of the safety and efficacy of iron supplementation in pregnant women. Personal communication 17 December 2003.

Additional references

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  3. References to studies awaiting assessment
  4. References to ongoing studies
  5. Additional references
  6. References to other published versions of this review
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Koller 1979
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Lumley 2003
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Lund 1961
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Mahomed 1989
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Mahomed 1998
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Mahomed 2000
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Mercer 2001
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Mora 2002
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Murphy 1986
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Poulsen 1990
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Prema 1982
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Scholl 1992
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Scholl 1997
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References to other published versions of this review

  1. References to studies included in this review
  2. References to studies excluded from this review
  3. References to studies awaiting assessment
  4. References to ongoing studies
  5. Additional references
  6. References to other published versions of this review
CDSR 1998
  • Mahomed K. Iron and folate supplementation in pregnancy. The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 1998, Issue 3. [Art. No.: CD001135. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD001135.pub2]
CDSR 2000
  • Mahomed K. Iron supplementation in pregnancy. The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2000, Issue 1. [Art. No.: CD000117. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD000117.pub2]