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According to WHO guidelines Haemoglobin level < 11.0 gm in pregnancy. Indian standard Haemoglobin level < 10.5 gm

Causes

  1. Iron deficiency Anaemia Commonest
    • Dietary deficiency
    • Worm infestations
    • Repeated pregnancies at short intervals
  2. Megaloblastic Anaemia commonly due to folic acid deficiency in pregnancy.
  3. Thallasemias
  4. Haemoglobinopathy Inherent Defect in structure of haemoglobin which results in defective synthesis of Hb in red cells.

Symptoms
General weakness, fatigue. In severe deficiency breathlessness on exertion and generalized swelling of body may occur. Sometimes even heart failure can occur.

Diagnosis
Haemogram is the main test. Which includes haemoglobin, red cell count, red cell Hb conc, peri pheral blood film to know the type of deficiency. More specific test like S. Ferritin and TIBC levels may be required to defne the exact cause of anaemia.

Prevention
  • Since nutritional deficiency is the commonest cause of anaemia. A diet rich in iron like green leafy vegetables (spinanch, methi, peas), gram flour (besan) chick pea (channa), eggs, meat (esp organ meat like liver), poultry etc. is required.
  • Worm infestation can be prevented by washing hands properly, washing vegetables, fruits thoroughly before cooking or eating & not passing stools in open /unhygienic areas.
  • Spacing childbirth- At least 2 yrs interval is needed to replenish the iron store depleted during pregnancy.
  • Taking oral iron tablets regularly from 4th month of pregnancy and during lactation.

Treatment
Iron and folic acid supplementation during pregnancy and throughout lactation.
  • Some patients get constipation or diarrhea, acidity, bad taste etc with iron tablets and do not want to take it In such patients intra muscular injections of iron are prescribed.
  • In severe anemia (Hb < 6.0 gms) blood transfusion may also be needed to prevent risk of heart failure.


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