Calcium supplementation reduces the risk of pregnancy-induced hypertension in an Andes population

Authors

  • P. LÓPEZ-JARAMILLO,

    Corresponding author
    1. Laboratorio de Investigaciones en Metabolismo y Nutricion, Facultad de Ciencias Medicas, Universidad Central, Iquique y Sodiro, Quito, Ecuador
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  • M. NARVÁEZ,

    1. Laboratorio de Investigaciones en Metabolismo y Nutricion, Facultad de Ciencias Medicas, Universidad Central, Iquique y Sodiro, Quito, Ecuador
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  • R. M. WETGEL,

    1. Division of Epidemiology, Department of Pathobiology and Biostatistics Unit, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois, USA
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  • R. YÉPEZ

    1. Laboratorio de Investigaciones en Metabolismo y Nutricion, Facultad de Ciencias Medicas, Universidad Central, Iquique y Sodiro, Quito, Ecuador
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Dr Patricio López-Jaramillo

Abstract

Summary. Previous studies have suggested that increased dietary calcium is associated with a decreased occurrence of pregnancy-induced hypertension. In this study 106 young healthy nulliparous women, residing in Quito, Ecuador, were enrolled in a double-blind, randomized, controlled clinical trial. From 24 weeks gestation until delivery they received either 2 g of elemental calcium per day or a placebo. Calcium supplementation was associated with a significantly decreased risk of pregnancy-induced hypertension, with 4.1% developing pregnancy-induced hypertension in the treatment group versus 27.9% in the placebo group. Treatment was associated with a decrease in both systolic and diastolic blood pressure over the course of pregnancy. In addition, there was a small but significant increase in serum ionized calcium levels in the calcium-supplemented group during the treatment period.

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