Article Text

Download PDFPDF

Significance of tests of iron nutrition in pregnancy
  1. J. Metz,
  2. L. Turchetti,
  3. B. Combrink,
  4. S. Krawitz
  1. Department of Haematology, South African Institute for Medical Research, and Bridgman Memorial Hospital, Johannesburg


    Tests of iron and folate nutrition have been carried out in early pregnancy and at delivery in 63 Bantu females. Accepted normal values for serum iron, and percentage saturation of transferrin, but not for unsaturated iron-binding capacity, for non-pregnant subjects were found to apply equally well in pregnancy. Concomitant folate deficiency in early pregnancy did not render tests of iron deficiency less valid. The unsaturated iron-binding capacity, percentage saturation, and marrow iron stores in early pregnancy all showed a significant correlation with the haemoglobin value at term. Patients with normal marrow iron stores and a percentage saturation of transferrin of 20 or more at or before the 24th week are unlikely to become anaemic from iron deficiency during pregnancy.

    Statistics from

    Request Permissions

    If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.


    • 1 This work was supported by a research grant from the World Health Organization.