Comparison of effect of daily versus weekly iron supplementation during pregnancy on lipid peroxidation

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To compare the effect of daily versus weekly iron supplementation on lipid peroxidation, hemoglobin levels and maternal and perinatal outcome in non-anemic pregnant women.


Of 109 women randomly allocated into three groups, 90 completed the study. Group I (n = 30) received daily iron folic acid; Group II (n = 30) received weekly iron folic acid; Group III (n = 30) received daily iron (III)-hydroxide polymaltose complex. Hemoglobin levels, hematological indices, thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) and glutathione levels were measured at baseline (14–16 weeks) and at 30–34 weeks. Statistical analysis was done using the anova test.


Group I had a highly significant increase in TBARS level (0.61 ± 0.26 µmol/L, P = 0.000) compared to groups II and III in which the change in TBARS was not significant (0.02 ± 0.06 and 0.007 ± 0.06 µmol/L, respectively). There was an insignificant fall in glutathione levels in all groups. There was no significant difference in the mean period of gestation, pregnancy complications and neonatal outcome between the three groups. Among 22.2% of women who were non-compliant, Group I had significantly higher incidence of non-compliance (P = 0.016) and side-effects (P = 0.001). Final hemoglobin was higher in Group I than II (11.9 ± 1.2, 11.3 ± 0.9, respectively, P = 0.041). The TBARS level was not statistically different between preterm and term deliveries. Nine out of 11 patients who developed hypertension during pregnancy had preeclampsia. The final TBARS level was significantly higher in these women (P = 0.000).


Daily supplementation with ferrous sulphate results in greater lipid peroxidation than weekly supplementation, the latter is comparable with daily iron (III)-hydroxide polymaltose complex. Lipid peroxidation levels are significantly higher in preeclampsia.

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