Understanding Anemia during Pregnancy
Anemia in pregnancy is one of the most common medical disorders in India. The health condition is mainly responsible for increased maternal morbidity and mortality. The problem may be due to nutritional deficiency and non-nutritional deficiency. Some of the major non-nutritional deficiency includes the thalassemias, sickle cell disorders, and hemolytic anemia, etc.
Prenatal care is important to deal with anemia in pregnancy. Determining the factors responsible for anemia in pregnancy and employment of methods of eradication is also important.
One of the major strategies used by doctors to cure anemia in pregnancy is providing ample iron supplement. The National Nutritional Anemia Prophylaxis Program (NNAPP) has recommended 60 mg of elemental iron and 500 \ig of folic acid on a daily basis for about 100 days to all pregnant women.
Prevention and management of nutritional anemia is easy and cheap. One must take special care about getting regular check up from doctors and take medications. One must also include foods that cure this deficiency during pregnancy.
Effects of Anemia on Pregnancy
The condition will not have any adverse effect on pregnancy and labor.
The condition will cause weakness, fatigue and poor work performance.
When anemia has developed in a pregnant woman, she may begin to experience some difficulty in breathing. Her breathing can become labored. She will also experience difficulty in palpitations. Some women also suffer from angina may also be experienced. In severe cases, it can result in a life threatening situation for mother and the yet to be born baby.
What are the risk periods for maternal mortality due to anemia?
• A woman is at risk during 30-32 weeks of pregnancy
• During labor
• Immediately following delivery
Many women are at risk of cardiac failure and puerperium (pulmonary embolism).
Iron Deficiency Anemia
Iron deficiency anemia is medically defined as ‘microcytic hypochromic anemia’. This is a condition when iron store in body becomes inadequate for the need of normal erythropoiesis. Sometimes, body tends to exhaust iron store prior to red cell production reduction in the body. This causes iron deficiency anemia.
Iron store depletion occurs due to the disparity between normal physiological demands such as:
• Body growth
• Loss of blood due to menstruation
• Low level of dietary iron intake
• Low efficiency of iron absorption and utilization
Rich Sources of Iron Recommended in Pregnancy
• Dry fruits
• Green leafy vegetables