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1.  Hemoglobin estimation by the HemoCue® portable hemoglobin photometer in a resource poor setting 
Background
In resource poor settings where automated hematology analyzers are not available, the Cyanmethemoglobin method is often used. This method though cheaper, takes more time. In blood donations, the semi-quantitative gravimetric copper sulfate method which is very easy and inexpensive may be used but does not provide an acceptable degree of accuracy. The HemoCue® hemoglobin photometer has been used for these purposes. This study was conducted to generate data to support or refute its use as a point-of-care device for hemoglobin estimation in mobile blood donations and critical care areas in health facilities.
Method
EDTA blood was collected from study participants drawn from five groups: pre-school children, school children, pregnant women, non-pregnant women and men. Blood collected was immediately processed to estimate the hemoglobin concentration using three different methods (HemoCue®, Sysmex KX21N and Cyanmethemoglobin). Agreement between the test methods was assessed by the method of Bland and Altman. The Intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) was used to determine the within subject variability of measured hemoglobin.
Results
Of 398 subjects, 42% were males with the overall mean age being 19.4 years. The overall mean hemoglobin as estimated by each method was 10.4 g/dl for HemoCue, 10.3 g/dl for Sysmex KX21N and 10.3 g/dl for Cyanmethemoglobin. Pairwise analysis revealed that the hemoglobin determined by the HemoCue method was higher than that measured by the KX21N and Cyanmethemoglobin. Comparing the hemoglobin determined by the HemoCue to Cyanmethemoglobin, the concordance correlation coefficient was 0.995 (95% CI: 0.994-0.996, p < 0.001). The Bland and Altman's limit of agreement was -0.389 - 0.644 g/dl with the mean difference being 0.127 (95% CI: 0.102-0.153) and a non-significant difference in variability between the two measurements (p = 0.843). After adjusting to assess the effect of other possible confounders such as sex, age and category of person, there was no significant difference in the hemoglobin determined by the HemoCue compared to Cyanmethemoglobin (coef = -0.127, 95% CI: -0.379 - 0.634).
Conclusion
Hemoglobin determined by the HemoCue method is comparable to that determined by the other methods. The HemoCue photometer is therefore recommended for use as on-the-spot device for determining hemoglobin in resource poor setting.
doi:10.1186/1472-6890-11-5
PMCID: PMC3095531  PMID: 21510885
2.  Hemoglobin levels and anemia evaluation during pregnancy in the highlands of Tibet: a hospital-based study 
BMC Public Health  2009;9:336.
Background
Anemia is regarded as a major risk factor for unfavorable pregnancy outcomes, but there have been no previous studies describing the pattern of hemoglobin concentration during pregnancy in Tibet and the relationship between altitude and Hb concentration in the pregnant women living in Tibet still has not been clearly established. The main objectives of this study were to study the hemoglobin levels and prevalence of anemia among pregnant women living in the highlands of Tibet and to evaluate potential associations of hemoglobin and anemia with women's characteristics.
Methods
The hospital-based study was conducted in 380 pregnant women. Their blood samples were tested and related sociodemographic information was collected. Multiple linear regression model and multiple logistic regression model were used to assess the association of pregnant women's characteristics with hemoglobin level and the occurrence of anemia. Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Dirren et al. and Dallman et al. methods were used to adjust the hemoglobin measurements based on altitude for estimating the prevalence of anemia.
Results
The mean hemoglobin concentration was 127.6 g/L (range: 55.0-190.0 g/L). Prevalence rate of anemia in this study was 70.0%, 77.9% and 41.3%, respectively for three altitude-correction methods for hemoglobin (CDC method, Dirren et al. method, and Dallman et al. method). Gestational age, ethnicity, residence and income were significantly associated with the hemoglobin concentration and prevalence of anemia in the study population. Specially, the hemoglobin concentration of pregnant women decreased with increase in gestational age.
Conclusion
The hemoglobin level was low and prevalence rate of anemia was high among pregnant women in Lhasa, Tibet. Gestational age, ethnicity, residence and income were found to be significantly associated with the hemoglobin level and the occurrence of anemia in the study population.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-9-336
PMCID: PMC2753353  PMID: 19754927
3.  Environmental risk factors for iron deficiency anemia in children 12–24 months old in the area of Thessalia in Greece  
Hippokratia  2008;12(4):240-250.
Background and aim: Iron deficiency anemia (IDA) is a common problem all over the world, which attacks mainly pregnant women, infants and children. The aim of the study was to estimate the prevalence of IDA in children 12–24 months old in a specific area of Thessalia, located in the central part of Greece, and to identify the environmental risk factors associated with it.
Patients and Methods: In the first part of this cross–sectional and case–control study, the hemoglobin (Hb) levels of 938 children were estimated by a mobile photometer analyzer. In the second part of the study, children with Hb < 11 gr/dl were compared with matched random selected controls in hematological, anthropometric and environmental parameters. The estimated laboratory values were Hb, hematocrit, mean corpuscular volume, mean corpuscular hemoglobin, mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration, zinc protoporphyrin, serum iron, serum ferritin, transferring saturation, total iron binding capacity and Hb electrophoresis. Finally 75 children (34 boys, 41 girls, mean age 17.51±3.5 months), who were found with IDA, constituted the case group while 75 healthy children constituted the control group.
Results: The prevalence of IDA in the region was 7.99%. At the same time, a number of children with stigma of bthalassaemia (2.13%) was discovered, something that had escaped identification. There were no differences due to the method of determination (mobile or laboratory) in the values of Hb between the two groups. Significant differences were recorded (p<0.001) in all hematological and anthropometric parameters except for head circumference. Regarding environmental factors, significant differences were found in the following parameters: ratio rooms/number of family members (p=0.01), number of family members (p=0.01), number of children in the family (p<0.001), birth rate (p<0.001), education and profession of the parents (p<0.001), source of drinking water and sewage system (p<0.001), duration of breast feeding (p<0.001), milk consumption by the child during the period of the reported research (p<0.001), child's health status according to the mother (p<0.001), and frequency of seeking pediatric care (p=0.02).
Conclusions: Although the prevalence of IDA in this area of Greece is similar to the one observed in the rest of the developed world, it still consists a public health problem. The mobile method for Hb estimation should be introduced in Greece since its reliability to detect IDA has been, once more, confirmed. The application of simple questionnaires for the detection of the environmental IDA risk factors could help in the prognosis and prevention of anemia. Further improvement of the IDA status in Greece could be achieved through the dissemination of information about iron rich foods, the amelioration of environmental conditions and the application of reliable, easy to use and cheap methods for Hb estimation.
PMCID: PMC2580047  PMID: 19158969
children; iron deficiency anemia; environment; questionnaire; Greece
4.  Prevalence and severity of anemia among school children in Jimma Town, Southwest Ethiopia 
BMC Hematology  2014;14:3.
Background
Anemia is a major health problem worldwide. Because of health and socioeconomic problems, the prevalence of anemia is higher in developing countries. Children and pregnant women are the most vulnerable groups to anemia. The aim of the present study was to determine the magnitude of anemia among school children.
Methods
A cross-sectional household survey was conducted in January 2011 on 423 children, aged 6–14 years, selected through systematic random sampling method. Sociodemographic and anthropometric data were collected using a pre-tested questionnaire. Capillary blood was taken from the fingertip of each child and hemoglobin was measured using HaemoCue digital photometer. All the necessary safety measures were taken during blood collection. Anthropometric indicators were measured using WHO’s guideline. Data analysis was made using SPSS Version 16.0 for Windows. The association between predictors and outcome variables were measured by a stepwise logistic regression model. Ethical permission was obtained; consent of the parents/guardian was taken and confidentiality was maintained.
Result
A total of 404 children were studied. The mean age was 10.21(SD ± 1.89) years. The proportion of females was 217(53.7%). The mean hemoglobin level for both sexes was 11.59(SD ± 1.97 g/dl). The current prevalence of anemia was 152(37.6%), out of which, 73(18.1%) had mild while 79(19.6%) of them had moderate anemia. The prevalence of anemia among the age group of 6–11 years was 118(40.5%) while the prevalence among the group of 12–14 years old children was 34(30.1%). Among the selected variables in the logistic regression analysis, low family income [OR = 4.925, 95% CI(1.063,22.820)], mothers’ education [OR = 4.621, 95% CI(1.383,15.439)], intake of plant food [OR = 3.847, 95% CI(2.068, 7.157)] and intake of animal food [OR = 2.37, 95% CI(1.040,5.402)] were significantly and independently associated with anemia.
Conclusion
Anemia is a moderate public health problem in the study area. Family income, educational status of parents and inadequate plant and animal food intake are the predictors of anemia. Improving the economic status of the family, women education and health education about balanced animal and plant food consumption are recommended strategies to reduce the burden of anemia.
doi:10.1186/2052-1839-14-3
PMCID: PMC3896819  PMID: 24433408
Hemoglobin; Anemia; School children; Prevalence
5.  Major Burden of Severe Anemia from Non-Falciparum Malaria Species in Southern Papua: A Hospital-Based Surveillance Study 
PLoS Medicine  2013;10(12):e1001575.
Ric Price and colleagues use hospital-based surveillance data to estimate the risk of severe anemia and mortality associated with endemic Plasmodium species in southern Papua, Indonesia.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Background
The burden of anemia attributable to non-falciparum malarias in regions with Plasmodium co-endemicity is poorly documented. We compared the hematological profile of patients with and without malaria in southern Papua, Indonesia.
Methods and Findings
Clinical and laboratory data were linked for all patients presenting to a referral hospital between April 2004 and December 2012. Data were available on patient demographics, malaria diagnosis, hemoglobin concentration, and clinical outcome, but other potential causes of anemia could not be identified reliably. Of 922,120 patient episodes (837,989 as outpatients and 84,131 as inpatients), a total of 219,845 (23.8%) were associated with a hemoglobin measurement, of whom 67,696 (30.8%) had malaria. Patients with P. malariae infection had the lowest hemoglobin concentration (n = 1,608, mean = 8.93 [95% CI 8.81–9.06]), followed by those with mixed species infections (n = 8,645, mean = 9.22 [95% CI 9.16–9.28]), P. falciparum (n = 37,554, mean = 9.47 [95% CI 9.44–9.50]), and P. vivax (n = 19,858, mean = 9.53 [95% CI 9.49–9.57]); p-value for all comparisons <0.001. Severe anemia (hemoglobin <5 g/dl) was present in 8,151 (3.7%) patients. Compared to patients without malaria, those with mixed Plasmodium infection were at greatest risk of severe anemia (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] 3.25 [95% CI 2.99–3.54]); AORs for severe anaemia associated with P. falciparum, P. vivax, and P. malariae were 2.11 (95% CI 2.00–2.23), 1.87 (95% CI 1.74–2.01), and 2.18 (95% CI 1.76–2.67), respectively, p<0.001. Overall, 12.2% (95% CI 11.2%–13.3%) of severe anemia was attributable to non-falciparum infections compared with 15.1% (95% CI 13.9%–16.3%) for P. falciparum monoinfections. Patients with severe anemia had an increased risk of death (AOR = 5.80 [95% CI 5.17–6.50]; p<0.001). Not all patients had a hemoglobin measurement, thus limitations of the study include the potential for selection bias, and possible residual confounding in multivariable analyses.
Conclusions
In Papua P. vivax is the dominant cause of severe anemia in early infancy, mixed P. vivax/P. falciparum infections are associated with a greater hematological impairment than either species alone, and in adulthood P. malariae, although rare, is associated with the lowest hemoglobin concentration. These findings highlight the public health importance of integrated genus-wide malaria control strategies in areas of Plasmodium co-endemicity.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Malaria—a mosquito-borne parasitic disease—is a global public health problem. Five parasites cause malaria—Plasmodium falciparum, P. vivax, P. ovale, P. malariae, and P. knowlesi. Of these, P. vivax is the commonest and most widely distributed, whereas P. falciparum causes the most deaths—about a million every year. All these parasites enter their human host when an infected mosquito takes a blood meal. The parasites migrate to the liver where they replicate and mature into a parasitic form known as merozoites. After 8–9 days, the merozoites are released from the liver cells and invade red blood cells where they replicate rapidly before bursting out and infecting more red blood cells. Malaria's recurring flu-like symptoms are caused by this cyclical increase in parasites in the blood. Malaria needs to be treated promptly with antimalarial drugs to prevent the development of potentially fatal complications. Infections with P. falciparum in particular can cause anemia (a reduction in red blood cell numbers) and can damage the brain and other vital organs by blocking the capillaries that supply these organs with blood.
Why Was This Study Done?
It is unclear what proportion of anemia is attributable to non-falciparum malarias in regions of the world where several species of malaria parasite are always present (Plasmodium co-endemicity). Public health officials in such regions need to know whether non-falciparum malarias are a major cause of anemia when designing malaria control strategies. If P. vivax, for example, is a major cause of anemia in an area where P. vivax and P. falciparum co-exist, then any malaria control strategies that are implemented need to take into account the biological differences between the parasites. In this hospital-based cohort study, the researchers investigate the burden of severe anemia from the endemic Plasmodium species in southern Papua, Indonesia.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers used hospital record numbers to link clinical and laboratory data for patients presenting to a referral hospital in southern Papua over an 8-year period. The hemoglobin level (an indicator of anemia) was measured in about a quarter of hospital presentations (some patients attended the hospital several times). A third of the presentations who had their hemoglobin level determined (67,696 presentations) had clinical malaria. Patients with P. malariae infection had the lowest average hemoglobin concentration. Patients with mixed species, P. falciparum, and P. vivax infections had slightly higher average hemoglobin levels but all these levels were below the normal range for people living in Papua. Among the patients who had their hemoglobin status assessed, 3.7% had severe anemia. After allowing for other factors that alter the risk of anemia (“confounding” factors such as age), patients with mixed Plasmodium infection were more than three times as likely to have severe anemia as patients without malaria. Patients with P. falciparum, P. vivax, or P. malariae infections were about twice as likely to have severe anemia as patients without malaria. About 12.2% of severe anemia was attributable to non-falciparum infections, 15.1% was attributable to P. falciparum monoinfections, and P. vivax was the dominant cause of severe anemia in infancy. Finally, compared to patients without anemia, patients with severe anemia had nearly a 6-fold higher risk of death.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings provide a comparative assessment of the pattern of anemia associated with non-falciparum malarias in Papua and an estimate of the public health importance of these malarias. Although the accuracy of these findings may be affected by residual confounding (for example, the researchers did not consider nutritional status when calculating how much malaria infection increases the risk of anemia) and other limitations of the study design, non-falciparum malarias clearly make a major contribution to the burden of anemia in southern Papua. In particular, these findings reveal the large contribution that P. vivax makes to severe anemia in infancy, show that the hematological (blood-related) impact of P. malariae is most apparent in adulthood, and suggest, in contrast to some previous reports, that mixed P. vivax/P. falciparum infection is associated with a higher risk of severe anemia than monoinfection with either species. These findings, which need to be confirmed in other settings, highlight the public health importance of implementing integrated malaria control strategies that aim to control all Plasmodium species rather than a single species in regions of Plasmodium co-endemicity.
Additional Information
Please access these websites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001575.
This study is further discussed in a PLOS Medicine Perspective by Gosling and Hsiang
Information is available from the World Health Organization on malaria (in several languages); the 2012 World Malaria Report provides details of the current global malaria situation
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provide information on malaria (in English and Spanish), including information on different Plasmodium species and a selection of personal stories about malaria
The Malaria Vaccine Initiative has fact sheets on Plasmodium falciparum malaria and on Plasmodium vivax malaria
MedlinePlus provides links to additional information on malaria and on anemia (in English and Spanish)
Information is available from the WorldWide Antimalarial Resistance Network on antimalarial drug resistance for P. falciparum and P. vivax
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001575
PMCID: PMC3866090  PMID: 24358031
6.  Iron deficiency anemia is not a rare problem among women of reproductive ages in Ethiopia: a community based cross sectional study 
Background
In Ethiopia, the existence of iron deficiency anemia is controversial despite the fact that Ethiopia is one of the least developed in Africa with a high burden of nutrient deficiencies.
Methods
The first large nutrition study of a representative sample of women in Ethiopia was conducted from June to July 2005 and a systematically selected sub-sample of 970 of these subjects, 15 to 49 years old, were used in this analysis of nutritional anemia. Hemoglobin was measured from capillary blood using a portable HemoCue photometer. For serum ferritin, venous blood from antecubital veins was measured by an automated Elecsys 1020 using commercial kits. Diets were assessed via simplified food frequency questionnaire. The association of anemia to demographic and health variables was tested by chi-square and a stepwise backward logistic regression model was applied to test the significant associations observed in chi square tests.
Results
Mean hemoglobin ± SD was 11.5 ± 2.1 g/dL with a 29.4% prevalence of anemia. Mean serum ferritin was 58 ± 41.1 ug/L with a 32.1% prevalence of iron deficiency. The overall prevalence rate of iron deficiency anemia was 18.0%. Prevalence of anemia, iron deficiency, and iron deficiency anemia was highest among those 31-49 years old (p < 0.05). Intake of vegetables less than once a day and meat less than once a week was common and was associated with increased anemia (p = 0.001). Although the prevalence of anemia was slightly higher among women with parasitic infestation the difference was not significant (p = 0.9). Nonetheless, anemia was significantly higher in women with history of illness and the association was retained even when the variable was adjusted for its confounding effect in the logistic regression models (AOR = 0.3; 95%CI = 0.17 to 0.5) signifying that the most probable causes of anemia is nutrition related and to some extent chronic illnesses.
Conclusion
Moderate nutritional anemia in the form of iron deficiency anemia is a problem in Ethiopia and therefore, the need for improved supplementation to vulnerable groups is warranted to achieve the United Nation's Millennium Development Goals. Chronic illnesses are another important cause of anemia.
doi:10.1186/1471-2326-9-7
PMCID: PMC2749016  PMID: 19735547
7.  Magnitude of Anemia and Associated Risk Factors among Pregnant Women Attending Antenatal Care in Shalla Woreda, West Arsi Zone, Oromia Region, Ethiopia 
Background
Anemia during pregnancy is a common problem in developing countries and affects both the mother's and her child's health. The main objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of and the factors associated with anemia among pregnant women.
Methods
Facility based cross-sectional study design was conducted from June to August, 2011 on 374 pregnant women. Mothers who came for ANC during the study period and who met the inclusion criteria were interviewed and a capillary blood sample was taken. Hemoglobin level was determined by using HemoCue photometer, and interviewer administered questionnaire was used to collect data. Data were cleaned, coded and fed into SPSS version 16.0 for analysis.
Result
The mean hemoglobin concentration was 12.05±1.5 g/dl and prevalence of anemia was 36.6%. Family sizes (COR=2.67, CI (1.65, 4.32), third trimester (COR=1.45, CI (1.11, 2.23), meat consumption <1x/wk (COR=3.47, CI (1.58, 7.64) and pica (COR=2.33, CI (1.52, 3.58) were significantly associated with anemia. Having five or more children (AOR=5.2, CI [1.29, 21.09]), intake of vegetables and fruits less than once per day (AOR= 6.7, CI [2.49, 17.89]), intake of tea always after meal (AOR = 12.83.CI [45-28.9]), and recurrence of illness during pregnancy (AOR=7.3, CI [2.12–25.39]) were factors associated with anemia.
Conclusion
This study showed that anemia is a moderate public health problem. Less frequent meat and vegetable consumption, parity ≥5 are risk factors for anemia. Therefore, reducing parity, taking balanced diet and use of mosquito nets during pregnancy are recommended.
PMCID: PMC3742894  PMID: 23950633
Hemoglobin; Anemia; Pregnancy; ANC
8.  The Effect of Intermittent Antenatal Iron Supplementation on Maternal and Infant Outcomes in Rural Viet Nam: A Cluster Randomised Trial 
PLoS Medicine  2013;10(6):e1001470.
Beverley-Anne Biggs and colleagues conduct a community-based cluster randomized trial in rural Viet Nam to compare the effect of antenatal iron-folic acid supplementation taken daily or twice weekly on maternal and infant outcomes.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Background
Anemia affects over 500 million women, and in pregnancy is associated with impaired maternal and infant outcomes. Intermittent antenatal iron supplementation is an attractive alternative to daily dosing; however, the impact of this strategy on infant outcomes remains unclear. We compared the effect of intermittent antenatal iron supplementation with daily iron supplementation on maternal and infant outcomes in rural Viet Nam.
Methods and Findings
This cluster randomised trial was conducted in Ha Nam province, Viet Nam. 1,258 pregnant women (<16 wk gestation) in 104 communes were assigned to daily iron–folic acid (IFA), twice weekly IFA, or twice weekly multiple micronutrient (MMN) supplementation. Primary outcome was birth weight. Mean birth weight was 3,148 g (standard deviation 416). There was no difference in the birth weights of infants of women receiving twice weekly IFA compared to daily IFA (mean difference [MD] 28 g; 95% CI −22 to 78), or twice weekly MMN compared to daily IFA (MD −36.8 g; 95% CI −82 to 8.2). At 32 wk gestation, maternal ferritin was lower in women receiving twice weekly IFA compared to daily IFA (geometric mean ratio 0.73; 95% CI 0.67 to 0.80), and in women receiving twice weekly MMN compared to daily IFA (geometric mean ratio 0.62; 95% CI 0.57 to 0.68), but there was no difference in hemoglobin levels. Infants of mothers who received twice weekly IFA had higher cognitive scores at 6 mo of age compared to those who received daily IFA (MD 1.89; 95% CI 0.23 to 3.56).
Conclusions
Twice weekly antenatal IFA or MMN did not produce a clinically important difference in birth weight, when compared to daily IFA supplementation. The significant improvement in infant cognitive outcomes at 6 mo of age following twice weekly antenatal IFA requires further exploration, and provides additional support for the use of intermittent, rather than daily, antenatal IFA in populations with low rates of iron deficiency.
Trial registration
Australia New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry 12610000944033
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Anemia is a common condition in which the blood does not supply the body with enough oxygen because of a low number of red blood cells or low levels of hemoglobin—the iron-containing pigment that enables red blood cells to carry oxygen. Iron deficiency is the most common cause of anemia worldwide and, according to the World Health Organization, affects over 2 billion people: half of all pregnant women and 40% of preschool children in low- and middle-income countries are thought to be anemic. Anemia contributes to 20% of all maternal deaths and is also linked to increased maternal morbidity, higher rates of preterm birth and low birth weight, and reduced infant survival, with potential long-term consequences for child growth and development. Identifying and treating iron deficiency anemia is therefore a global health priority.
Why Was This Study Done?
Daily iron–folic acid supplementation given from early in pregnancy is the standard recommended approach to prevent and treat anemia in pregnant women, but recently the World Health Organization recommended intermittent use because of poor compliance with daily regimes (because of side effects) and poor bowel absorption. However, the evidence from many of the studies used to support this recommendation was of poor quality, and so it remains unclear whether intermittent supplementation is as, or more, effective than daily supplementation, especially in lower income settings where antenatal testing for anemia is not readily available. So in this study, the researchers conducted a community-based cluster randomized trial (where groups of people are randomized, rather than individuals) in rural Viet Nam to compare the effect of antenatal iron–folic acid supplementation taken twice weekly (either alone, or in combination with other micronutrients) with daily iron–folic acid supplementation, on maternal and infant outcomes during the first six months of life.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers randomized 104 communes in Ha Nam Province, Viet Nam, and enrolled 1,258 women who were less than 16 weeks pregnant into the study between September and November 2010. Although the researchers intended to register the trial before the study started, registration was delayed by a month because the supplements arrived earlier than the researchers anticipated, and they thought it best to start recruiting at that time to avoid the Vietnamese New Year, when women might be travelling. Each woman was interviewed and had blood taken for hemoglobin and iron indices (ferritin) before receiving daily iron–folic acid supplementation (426 women), twice weekly iron–folic acid supplementation (425 women), or twice weekly iron–folic acid supplementation plus micronutrients (407 women). The women had follow-up assessments at 32 weeks gestation, delivery, and at six months postpartum: their infants were assessed at birth and at six months old.
The researchers found that at enrollment, the women's average hemoglobin concentration was 123 g/l, and 12.6% of the women were anemic. At 32 weeks gestation, 10.8% of the women were anemic, but there was no difference in hemoglobin levels between the three supplement groups. The average ferritin level was 75.6 µg/l at enrollment, with 2.2% of women iron deficient. Ferritin levels decreased from enrollment to 32 weeks gestation in all supplement groups but were lower in women who took twice weekly supplements. The researchers also found that birth weight (the primary outcome) was similar in all supplement groups, and there were also no differences in gestational age or in the risk of prematurity, stillbirth, or early neonatal death. At six months, there were also no differences in the levels of infant hemoglobin, prevalence of anemia, or growth rates. However, infants born to mothers in the twice weekly iron–folic acid group had improved cognitive development compared to infants born to mothers in the daily supplement group. Finally, the researchers found that adherence rates were significantly higher in the twice weekly iron–folic acid supplement group compared to the once daily regime.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings suggest that in an area of Southeast Asia with low anemia prevalence, once daily antenatal supplementation with iron–folic acid did not provide any benefits in birth weight or improved infant growth over twice weekly supplementation. Furthermore, twice weekly supplementation with iron–folic acid was associated with improved maternal adherence rates and also improved cognitive development in infants aged six months—a finding that requires further study and provides added support for the use of intermittent iron–folic acid supplementation over daily supplementation.
Additional Information
Please access these websites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001470.
The World Health Organization website has comprehensive information on anemia, including a report of global estimates and the guideline Intermittent Iron and Folic Acid Supplementation in Non-Anaemic Pregnant Women
Wikipedia provides information on iron supplementation (note: Wikipedia is a free online encyclopedia that anyone can edit; available in several languages)
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001470
PMCID: PMC3708703  PMID: 23853552
9.  Maternal Hemoglobin Concentration and Pregnancy Outcome: A Study of the Effects of Elevation in El Alto, Bolivia 
Iron-deficiency anemia is often under-diagnosed in developing countries, specifically in pregnant populations in regions of high altitude. Hemoglobin levels are not consistently adjusted for elevation, and therefore many anemic patients are left undiagnosed. The purpose of this study was to incorporate current parameters for diagnosing anemia in pregnancy at high altitudes, and to evaluate the effects of appropriately adjusted hemoglobin concentrations on pregnancy outcome. A few studies have examined the effect of elevation on hemoglobin status, and other studies have considered the effects of anemia of pregnancy; however, there is a lack of data demonstrating that altitude-adjusted hemoglobin levels accurately predict pregnancy outcome. Using the Student t-Test, multiple linear regression, and ANOVA statistical analyses, various factors of pregnancy outcome were compared between anemic and non-anemic groups, as defined by hemoglobin cut-off levels adjusted for trimester of pregnancy and altitude. When appropriate adjustments were used, maternal anemia was associated with lower infant Apgar scores at both one minute and five minutes after birth, as well as complication of labor, lower gestational age at birth, and higher parity. This study demonstrates the importance of altitude and trimester specific adjustments to maternal hemoglobin levels in order to accurately diagnose anemia in pregnancy. In addition, a clear correlation is seen between maternal hemoglobin level and pregnancy outcome.
PMCID: PMC3296152  PMID: 22399871
Iron-Deficiency Anemia; Pregnancy; Bolivia; Elevation; Altitude; Hemoglobin
10.  Comparison of HemoCue® hemoglobin-meter and automated hematology analyzer in measurement of hemoglobin levels in pregnant women at Khartoum hospital, Sudan 
Diagnostic Pathology  2012;7:30.
Background
Assessment of hemoglobin is one of the most reliable indicators for anemia, and is widely used to screen for anemia among pregnant women. The HemoCue® has been widely used for as a point-of-care device for hemoglobin estimation in health facilities. Previous studies showed contradictory results regarding the accuracy of HemoCue®.
Methods
This was a hospital-based cross sectional study carried- out among pregnant women at Khartoum hospital in Sudan to find out whether the measurement of hemoglobin concentration by HemoCue® using venous or capillary samples was comparable to that of the automated hematology analyzer as standard. Bland and Altman method was used to compare the measurements with an acceptable difference of ± 1.0 g/dl.
Results
Among the 108 subjects in this study the mean (SD) level of hemoglobin level using HemoCue® venous sample, HemoCue® capillary sample and automated hematology analyzer were 12.70 (1.77), 12.87 (2.04) and 11.53 (1.63) g/dl, respectively. Although the correlations between the measurements were all significant there was no agreement between HemoCue® and automated hematology analyzer. The bias + SD (limits of agreement) for HemoCue® venous versus hematology analyzer was 1.17 ± 1.57 (-1.97, 4.31) g/dl, HemoCue® capillary versus hematology analyzer was 1.34 ± 1.85 (-2.36, 5.04) g/dl, and HemoCue® venous versus HemoCue® capillary samples was 017 ± 1.90 and (3.97-3.63) g/dl.
Conclusion
Hemoglobin concentration assessment by HemoCue® using either venous or capillary blood samples has shown unacceptable agreement with automated hematology analyzer.
Virtual slides
The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here: http://www.diagnosticpathology.diagnomx.eu/vs/8797022296725036
doi:10.1186/1746-1596-7-30
PMCID: PMC3342090  PMID: 22436620
11.  Gastrointestinal Helminth Infection in Pregnancy: Disease Incidence and Hematological Alterations 
Iranian Journal of Public Health  2013;42(5):497-503.
Background
The incidence and hematological effects of helminth infection during pregnancy were investigated among pregnant women in Isiala, Mbano, Southeast Nigeria.
Methods:
Totally 282 pregnant women were enlisted for the study between October 2011 and September 2012. Stool samples were examined for intestinal helminths using formalin-ether sedimentation technique. Hemoglobin (Hb) and Packed Cell Volume (PCV) levels were evaluated in venous blood samples using Sahli’s and microhaematocrit methods respectively.
Results:
Forty six (16.3%) subjects were infected with at least one helminth parasite; 24 (8.5%) hookworm, 14(5.0%) and 2(0.7%) A. lumbricoides and Trichuris trichiura infections respectively. Intestinal helminthiases in pregnant women was significantly associated with age (P<0.05). The prevalence of intestinal helminthiases by parity was also significantly different (P<0.05) with primigravidae having the highest infection rate (27.5%). Hematological assessment showed that the prevalence of anemia among the women was 58.9% (mean±SD = 9.3±1.0). The differences in hemoglobin levels by age groups was statistically significant (P <0.05). The contributory effect of gastrointestinal helminths in anemia showed that infected pregnant women had lower mean hemoglobin (8.60±0.22g/dl) than the uninfected (9.72±0.07g/dl). Significant difference (t-value = 5.660, P<0.05) was observed between the Hb of the infected and uninfected pregnant women. In addition, infected pregnant women had mean PCV of 26.09±0.65% while the uninfected had 34.54±2.96%. The mean PCV of infected pregnant women was significantly different (t-value= 0.013, P<0.05) from that of the uninfected.
Conclusion
Anti-helminthic therapy after the first trimester should be part of the antenatal programme. Intestinal helminth infection showed significant negative correlation with Hb and PCV and contributed moderately to anemia.
PMCID: PMC3684458  PMID: 23802107
Anemia; Hematology; Hookworm; Hemoglobin; Packed cell volume
12.  Population-based screening for anemia using first-time blood donors 
American journal of hematology  2012;87(5):496-502.
Background
Anemia is an important public health concern. Data from population-based surveys such as the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) are the gold standard, but are obtained infrequently and include only small samples from certain minority groups.
Objectives
We assessed whether readily available databases of blood donor hemoglobin values could be used as a surrogate for population hemoglobin values from NHANES.
Design
Blood donor venous and fingerstick hemoglobin values were compared to 10,254 NHANES 2005-2008 venous hemoglobin values using demographically stratified analyses and ANOVA. Fingerstick hemoglobins or hematocrits were converted to venous hemoglobin estimates using regression analysis.
Results
Venous hemoglobin values from 1,609 first time donors correlated extremely well with NHANES data across different age, gender and demographic groups. Cigarette smoking increased hemoglobin by 0.26 to 0.59 g/dL depending on intensity. Converted fingerstick hemoglobin from 36,793 first time donors agreed well with NHANES hemoglobin (weighted mean hemoglobin of 15.53 g/dL for donors and 15.73 g/dL for NHANES) with similar variation in mean hemoglobin by age. However, compared to NHANES, the larger donor dataset showed reduced differences in mean hemoglobin between Blacks and other races/ethnicities.
Conclusions
Overall, first-time donor fingerstick hemoglobins approximate U.S. population data and represent a readily available public health resource for ongoing anemia surveillance.
doi:10.1002/ajh.23171
PMCID: PMC3525330  PMID: 22460662
Erythrocyte count; Hematologic tests; Anemia; United States; blood donors; African Continental Ancestry Group
13.  Maternal and Perinatal Outcomes in Second Hemoglobin Measurement in Nonanemic Women at First Booking: Effect of Altitude of Residence in Peru 
ISRN Obstetrics and Gynecology  2012;2012:368571.
Objective. To determine changes in hemoglobin concentration at second measurements after a normal hemoglobin concentration was detected at first booking during pregnancy at low and at high altitudes. Methods. This is a secondary analysis of a large database obtained from the Perinatal Information System in Peru which includes 379,816 pregnant women and their babies from 43 maternity units in Peru. Results. Most women remained with normal hemoglobin values at second measurement (75.1%). However, 21.4% of women became anemic at the second measurement. In all, 2.8% resulted with moderate/severe anemia and 3.5% with erythrocytosis (Hb>14.5 g/dL). In all cases Hb was higher as altitude increased. Risk for moderate/severe anemia increased associated with higher gestational age at second measurement of hemoglobin, BMI <19.9 kg/m2, living without partner, <5 antenatal care visits, first parity, multiparity, and preeclampsia. Lower risk for moderate/severe anemia was observed with normal high Hb level at first booking living at moderate and high altitude, and high BMI. Conclusion. Prevalence of anemia increases as pregnancy progress, and that a normal value at first booking may not be considered sufficient as Hb values should be observed throughout pregnancy. BMI was a risk for anemia in a second measurement.
doi:10.5402/2012/368571
PMCID: PMC3345214  PMID: 22577573
14.  Threshold Haemoglobin Levels and the Prognosis of Stable Coronary Disease: Two New Cohorts and a Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis 
PLoS Medicine  2011;8(5):e1000439.
Anoop Shah and colleagues performed a retrospective cohort study and a systematic review, and show evidence that in people with stable coronary disease there were threshold hemoglobin values below which mortality increased in a graded, continuous fashion.
Background
Low haemoglobin concentration has been associated with adverse prognosis in patients with angina and myocardial infarction (MI), but the strength and shape of the association and the presence of any threshold has not been precisely evaluated.
Methods and findings
A retrospective cohort study was carried out using the UK General Practice Research Database. 20,131 people with a new diagnosis of stable angina and no previous acute coronary syndrome, and 14,171 people with first MI who survived for at least 7 days were followed up for a mean of 3.2 years. Using semi-parametric Cox regression and multiple adjustment, there was evidence of threshold haemoglobin values below which mortality increased in a graded continuous fashion. For men with MI, the threshold value was 13.5 g/dl (95% confidence interval [CI] 13.2–13.9); the 29.5% of patients with haemoglobin below this threshold had an associated hazard ratio for mortality of 2.00 (95% CI 1.76–2.29) compared to those with haemoglobin values in the lowest risk range. Women tended to have lower threshold haemoglobin values (e.g, for MI 12.8 g/dl; 95% CI 12.1–13.5) but the shape and strength of association did not differ between the genders, nor between patients with angina and MI. We did a systematic review and meta-analysis that identified ten previously published studies, reporting a total of only 1,127 endpoints, but none evaluated thresholds of risk.
Conclusions
There is an association between low haemoglobin concentration and increased mortality. A large proportion of patients with coronary disease have haemoglobin concentrations below the thresholds of risk defined here. Intervention trials would clarify whether increasing the haemoglobin concentration reduces mortality.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Coronary artery disease is the main cause of death in high-income countries and the second most common cause of death in middle- and low-income countries, accounting for 16.3%, 13.9%, and 9.4% of all deaths, respectively, in 2004. Many risks factors, such as high blood pressure and high blood cholesterol level, are known to be associated with coronary artery disease, and prevention and treatment of such factors remains one of the key strategies in the management of coronary artery disease. Recent studies have suggested that low hemoglobin may be associated with mortality in patients with coronary artery disease. Therefore, using blood hemoglobin level as a prognostic biomarker for patients with stable coronary artery disease may be of potential benefit especially as measurement of hemoglobin is almost universal in such patients and there are available interventions that effectively increase hemoglobin concentration.
Why was This Study Done?
Much more needs to be understood about the relationship between low hemoglobin and coronary artery disease before hemoglobin levels can potentially be used as a clinical prognostic biomarker. Previous studies have been limited in their ability to describe the shape of this relationship—which means that it is uncertain whether there is a “best” hemoglobin threshold or a continuous graded relationship from “good” to “bad”—to assess gender differences, and to compare patients with angina or who have experienced previous myocardial infarction. In order to inform these knowledge gaps, the researchers conducted a retrospective analysis of patients from a prospective observational cohort as well as a systematic review and meta-analysis (statistical analysis) of previous studies.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of previous studies and found ten relevant studies, but none evaluated thresholds of risk, only linear relationships.
The researchers carried out a new study using the UK's General Practice Research Database—a national research tool that uses anonymized electronic clinical records of a representative sample of the UK population, with details of consultations, diagnoses, referrals, prescriptions, and test results—as the basis for their analysis. They identified and collected information from two cohorts of patients: those with new onset stable angina and no previous acute coronary syndrome; and those with a first myocardial infarction (heart attack). For these patients, the researchers also looked at all values of routinely recorded blood parameters (including hemoglobin) and information on established cardiovascular risk factors, such as smoking. The researchers followed up patients using death of any cause as a primary endpoint and put this data into a statistical model to identify upper and lower thresholds of an optimal hemoglobin range beyond which mortality risk increased.
The researchers found that there was a threshold hemoglobin value below which mortality continuously increased in a graded manner. For men with myocardial infarction, the threshold value was 13.5 g/dl: 29.5% of patients had hemoglobin below this threshold and had a hazard ratio for mortality of 2.00 compared to those with hemoglobin values in the lowest risk range. Women had a lower threshold hemoglobin value than men: 12.8 g/dl for women with myocardial infarction, but the shape and strength of association did not differ between the genders, or between patients with angina and myocardial infarction.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings suggest that there are thresholds of hemoglobin that are associated with increased risk of mortality in patients with angina or myocardial infarction. A substantial proportion of patients (15%–30%) have a hemoglobin level that places them at markedly higher risk of death compared to patients with lowest risk hemoglobin levels and importantly, these thresholds are higher than clinicians might anticipate—and are remarkably similar to World Health Organization anemia thresholds of 12 g/dl for women and 13 g/dl for men. Despite the limitations of these observational findings, this study supports the rationale for conducting future randomized controlled trials to assess whether hemoglobin levels are causal and whether clinicians should intervene to increase hemoglobin levels, for example by oral iron supplementation.
Additional Information
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1000439.
Wikipedia provides information about hemoglobin (note that Wikipedia is a free online encyclopedia that anyone can edit; available in several languages)
The World Health Organization provides an overview of the global prevalence of coronary artery disease, a factsheet on the top ten causes of death, as well as information on anemia
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1000439
PMCID: PMC3104976  PMID: 21655315
15.  Correlation of Pretreatment Hemoglobin and Platelet Counts with Clinicopathological Features in Colorectal Cancer in Saudi Population 
Background/Aims:
In Saudi Arabia, colorectal cancers (CRCs) are registered as the second most common cancers. However, no data has been reported about correlation of the severity of the anemia and pretreatment platelets level with clinicopathological features of CRCs. We aimed to evaluate the association between pretreatment hemoglobin and platelets level and the clinicopathological features of CRC patients in Saudi Arabia.
Materials and Methods:
Between September 2005 and November 2011, One hundred and fifty-four confirmed CRC patients underwent thorough physical examination, blood investigations, endoscopic ultrasonography (EUS), and computed tomography (CT) for staging before surgery. Findings of physical assessment, EUS, CT, and pathological specimens were correlated with pretreatment hemoglobin and platelets levels the Pearson-Kendall tau correlative coefficients.
Results:
The mean age of cohort was 56.6 years (range: 26-89). Left-sided CRC were predominant (97 patients; 63%). Mean size of primary tumor was 6 cms (1-18) SD ± 3.55. Mean values of hemoglobin, red blood cells, hematocrit, white blood cells, and platelets were 11.9 SD ± 2.3, 35.5 SD ± 5.7, 4.43 × 106/mL SD ± 0.6, 7.67 106/mL SD ± 2.44, and 343 × 103/mL SD ± 164.4, respectively. Pretreatment hemoglobin was inversely correlated with primary tumor size (R: 0.71, R2: 1.55, P = 0.0001) and nodal status (R: 0.02, R2: 0.05, P = 0.01). Right-sided CRC had significantly low pretreatment hemoglobin levels (P = 0.001). Interestingly, pretreatment thrombocytosis was seen only in right-sided CRC (P = 0.0001).
Conclusion:
Pretreatment anemia and thrombocytosis were found mainly in right-sided CRCs and advanced primary and nodal stages. Pretreatment hemoglobin and thrombocytosis can be considered as useful prognostic markers in CRC patients.
doi:10.4103/1319-3767.129479
PMCID: PMC3987154  PMID: 24705152
Colorectal cancers; correlation; pretreatment hemoglobin levels; platelet counts; Saudi population
16.  Population Hemoglobin Mean and Anemia Prevalence in Papua New Guinea: New Metrics for Defining Malaria Endemicity? 
PLoS ONE  2010;5(2):e9375.
Background
The hypothesis is that hemoglobin-based metrics are useful tools for estimating malaria endemicity and for monitoring malaria control strategies. The aim of this study is to compare population hemoglobin mean and anemia prevalence to established indicators of malaria endemicity, including parasite rates, rates of enlarged spleens in children, and records of (presumptive) malaria diagnosis among populations living with different levels of malaria transmission.
Methodology/Principal Findings
Convenience sample, multisite cross-sectional household surveys conducted in Papua New Guinea. Correlations (r2) between population Hb mean and anemia prevalence and altitude, parasite rate, and spleen rate were investigated in children ages 2 to 10 years, and in the general population; 21,664 individuals from 156 different communities were surveyed. Altitude ranged from 5 to 2120 meters. In young children, correlations between altitude and parasite rate, population Hb mean, anemia prevalence, and spleen rate were high (r2: −0.77, 0.73, −0.81, and −0.68; p<0.001). In the general population, correlations between altitude and population Hb mean and anemia prevalence were 0.83 and 0.85, respectively. Among young children, parasite rate correlated highly with anemia prevalence, population Hb mean, and spleen rate (r2: 0.81, −0.81, and 0.86; p<0.001). Population Hb mean (corrected for direct altitude effects) increased with altitude, from 10.5 g/dl at <500 m to 12.8 g/dl at >1500 m (p<0.001).
Conclusions/Significance
In PNG, where Plasmodium vivax accounts for an important part of all malaria infections, population hemoglobin mean and anemia prevalence correlate well with altitude, parasite, and spleen rates. Hb measurement is simple and affordable, and may be a useful new tool, alone or in association with other metrics, for estimating malaria endemicity and monitoring effectiveness of malaria control programs. Further prospective studies in areas with different malaria epidemiology and different factors contributing to the burden of anemia are warranted to investigate the usefulness of Hb metrics in monitoring malaria transmission intensity.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0009375
PMCID: PMC2827550  PMID: 20195369
17.  The Reliability of Portable Fixed Dynamometry During Hip and Knee Strength Assessments 
Journal of Athletic Training  2010;45(4):349-356.
Abstract
Context:
Insufficient lower extremity strength may be a risk factor for lower extremity injuries such as noncontact anterior cruciate ligament tears. Therefore, clinicians need reliable instruments to assess strength deficiencies.
Objective:
To assess the intrarater, interrater, intrasession, and intersession reliability of a portable fixed dynamometer in measuring the strength of the hip and knee musculature.
Design:
Crossover study.
Setting:
Sports medicine research laboratory.
Patients or Other Participants:
Three raters (A, B, C) participated in this 2-phase study. Raters A and B tested 11 healthy college graduate students (2 men, 9 women) in phase 1. Raters A and C tested 26 healthy college undergraduate students (7 men, 19 women) in phase 2.
Main Outcome Measure(s):
The dependent variables for the study were hip adductor, hip abductor, hip flexor, hip extensor, hip internal rotator, hip external rotator, knee flexor, and knee extensor peak force.
Results:
The phase 1 intrasession intraclass correlation coefficients for sessions 1, 2, and 3 ranged from 0.88 to 0.99 (SEM  =  0.08–3.02 N), 0.85 to 0.99 (SEM  =  0.26–3.88 N), and 0.92 to 0.96 (SEM  =  0.52–2.76 N), respectively. Intraclass correlation coefficients ranged from 0.57 to 0.95 (SEM  =  1.72–13.15 N) for phase 1 intersession values, 0.70 to 0.94 (SEM  =  1.42–9.20 N) for phase 2 intrarater reliability values, and 0.69 to 0.88 (SEM  =  1.20–8.50 N) for phase 2 interrater values.
Conclusions:
The portable fixed dynamometer showed good to high intrasession and intersession reliability values for hip and knee strength. Intrarater and interrater reliability were fair to high, except for hip internal rotation, which showed poor reliability.
doi:10.4085/1062-6050-45.4.349
PMCID: PMC2902028  PMID: 20617909
isometric activity; lower extremity
18.  Assessment of a Reflectance Photometer in a Veterinary Laboratory 
The Canadian Veterinary Journal  1984;25(6):243-246.
This report is an assessment of clinical chemistry dry reagent methodology for veterinary use. A portable reflectance photometer and dry reagent strips were used to measure canine whole blood hemoglobin, and total bilirubin, glucose, cholesterol, creatinine and urea in canine, bovine, equine and feline sera. Creatine kinase and lactate dehydrogenase were assayed in canine, bovine and equine sera. The following aspects of performance are reported: within run variation determined on canine samples, between run variation using a commercial control, correlations between dry reagent and wet reagent methodology on clinical samples, and dry reagent method serum chemistry reference values for the cow, horse and dog. A brief description of some technical advantages and limitations is included.
Technical requirements were minimal while reproducibility and accuracy compared well with the wet reagent method. The dry reagent method was found to be suitable for determination of canine, bovine, equine and feline serum variables as listed above.
PMCID: PMC1790592  PMID: 17422414
Dry reagent clinical chemistry; cow; horse; dog; cat
19.  Normal reference value of hemoglobin of middleaged women and altitude. 
AIM: In order to supply a scientific basis for uniting the normal reference value standard of hemoglobin of Chinese middlescent women. METHODS: A research is made about the relationship between the normal reference value of 25,917 examples of hemoglobin of middlescent women and altitude in 268 areas in China, the normal reference values of hemoglobin of middlescent women are determined by the hemoglobincyanide method. RESULTS: The correlation between the normal reference value of hemoglobin of middlescent women and altitude is quite significant (r = 0.827). By using the method of univariate linear regression analysis, one regression equation is inferred. CONCLUSION: If the altitude values are obtained in some areas, the normal reference value of hemoglobin of middlescent women of this area can be reckoned by using the regression equation. Furthermore, depending on the altitude, China can be divided into three districts: Qingzang District, Central District, and Eastern District.
PMCID: PMC2259123  PMID: 15989740
20.  Anemia prevalence and risk factors in pregnant women in an urban area of Pakistan 
Food and nutrition bulletin  2008;29(2):132-139.
Background.
Anemia affects almost two-thirds of pregnant women in developing countries and contributes to maternal morbidity and mortality and to low birthweight.
Objective.
To determine the prevalence of anemia and the dietary and socioeconomic factors associated with anemia in pregnant women living in an urban community setting in Hyderabad, Pakistan.
Methods.
This was a prospective, observational study of 1,369 pregnant women enrolled at 20 to 26 weeks of gestation and followed to 6 weeks postpartum. A blood sample was obtained at enrollment to determine hemoglobin levels. Information on nutritional knowledge, attitudes, and practice and dietary history regarding usual food intake before and during pregnancy were obtained by trained interviewers within 1 week of enrollment.
Results.
The prevalence of anemia (defined by the World Health Organization as hemoglobin < 11.0 g/dL) in these subjects was 90.5%; of these, 75.0% had mild anemia (hemoglobin from 9.0 to 10.9 g/dL) and 14.8% had moderate anemia (hemoglobin from 7.0 to 8.9 g/dL). Only 0.7% were severely anemic (hemoglobin < 7.0 g/dL). Nonanemic women were significantly taller, weighed more, and had a higher body mass index. Multivariate analysis after adjustment for education, pregnancy history, iron supplementation, and height showed that drinking more than three cups of tea per day before pregnancy (adjusted prevalence odds ratio [aPOR], 3.2; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.3 to 8.0), consumption of clay or dirt during pregnancy (aPOR, 3.7; 95% CI, 1.1 to 12.3), and never consuming eggs or consuming eggs less than twice a week during pregnancy (aPOR, 1.7; 95% CI, 1.1 to 2.5) were significantly associated with anemia. Consumption of red meat less than twice a week prior to pregnancy was marginally associated with anemia (aPOR, 1.2; 95% CI, 0.8 to 1.8) but was significantly associated with lower mean hemoglobin concentrations (9.9 vs. 10.0 g/dL, p = .05) during the study period. A subanalysis excluding women with mild anemia found similar associations to those of the main model, albeit even stronger.
Conclusions.
A high percentage of women at 20 to 26 weeks of pregnancy had mild to moderate anemia. Pica, tea consumption, and low intake of eggs and red meat were associated with anemia. Women of childbearing age should be provided nutritional education regarding food sources of iron, especially prior to becoming pregnant, and taught how food choices can either enhance or interfere with iron absorption.
PMCID: PMC3917507  PMID: 18693477
Anemia; developing countries; pregnancy
21.  Various Methods for Assessing Static Lower Extremity Alignment: Implications for Prospective Risk-Factor Screenings 
Journal of Athletic Training  2013;48(2):248-257.
Context:
Accurate, efficient, and reliable measurement methods are essential to prospectively identify risk factors for knee injuries in large cohorts.
Objective:
To determine tester reliability using digital photographs for the measurement of static lower extremity alignment (LEA) and whether values quantified with an electromagnetic motion-tracking system are in agreement with those quantified with clinical methods and digital photographs.
Design:
Descriptive laboratory study.
Setting:
Laboratory.
Patients or Other Participants:
Thirty-three individuals participated and included 17 (10 women, 7 men; age = 21.7 ± 2.7 years, height = 163.4 ± 6.4 cm, mass = 59.7 ± 7.8 kg, body mass index = 23.7 ± 2.6 kg/m2) in study 1, in which we examined the reliability between clinical measures and digital photographs in 1 trained and 1 novice investigator, and 16 (11 women, 5 men; age = 22.3 ± 1.6 years, height = 170.3 ± 6.9 cm, mass = 72.9 ± 16.4 kg, body mass index = 25.2 ± 5.4 kg/m2) in study 2, in which we examined the agreement among clinical measures, digital photographs, and an electromagnetic tracking system.
Intervention(s):
We evaluated measures of pelvic angle, quadriceps angle, tibiofemoral angle, genu recurvatum, femur length, and tibia length. Clinical measures were assessed using clinically accepted methods. Frontal- and sagittal-plane digital images were captured and imported into a computer software program. Anatomic landmarks were digitized using an electromagnetic tracking system to calculate static LEA.
Main Outcome Measure(s):
Intraclass correlation coefficients and standard errors of measurement were calculated to examine tester reliability. We calculated 95% limits of agreement and used Bland-Altman plots to examine agreement among clinical measures, digital photographs, and an electromagnetic tracking system.
Results:
Using digital photographs, fair to excellent intratester (intraclass correlation coefficient range = 0.70–0.99) and intertester (intraclass correlation coefficient range = 0.75–0.97) reliability were observed for static knee alignment and limb-length measures. An acceptable level of agreement was observed between clinical measures and digital pictures for limb-length measures. When comparing clinical measures and digital photographs with the electromagnetic tracking system, an acceptable level of agreement was observed in measures of static knee angles and limb-length measures.
Conclusions:
The use of digital photographs and an electromagnetic tracking system appears to be an efficient and reliable method to assess static knee alignment and limb-length measurements.
doi:10.4085/1062-6050-48.2.08
PMCID: PMC3600928  PMID: 23672390
posture; risk factor assessment; digital photographs
22.  Evaluation of a Portable Photometer for Estimating Diesel Particulate Matter Concentrations in an Underground Limestone Mine 
Annals of Occupational Hygiene  2010;54(5):566-574.
A low cost, battery-operated, portable, real-time aerosol analyzer is not available for monitoring diesel particulate matter (DPM) concentrations in underground mines. This study summarizes a field evaluation conducted at an underground limestone mine to evaluate the potential of the TSI AM 510 portable photometer (equipped with a Dorr-Oliver cyclone and 1.0-μm impactor) to qualitatively track time-weighted average mass and elemental, organic, and total carbon (TC) measurements associated with diesel emissions. The calibration factor corrected correlation coefficient (R2) between the underground TC and photometer measurements was 0.93. The main issues holding back the use of a photometer for real-time estimation of DPM in an underground mine are the removal of non-DPM-associated particulate matter from the aerosol stream using devices, such as a cyclone and/or impactor and calibration of the photometer to mine-specific aerosol.
doi:10.1093/annhyg/meq020
PMCID: PMC2913759  PMID: 20410071
diesel exhaust; diesel particulate matter; direct-reading instruments; photometer; real-time measurement
23.  The Association of Parasitic Infections in Pregnancy and Maternal and Fetal Anemia: A Cohort Study in Coastal Kenya 
Background
Relative contribution of these infections on anemia in pregnancy is not certain. While measures to protect pregnant women against malaria have been scaling up, interventions against helminthes have received much less attention. In this study, we determine the relative impact of helminthes and malaria on maternal anemia.
Methods
A prospective observational study was conducted in coastal Kenya among a cohort of pregnant women who were recruited at their first antenatal care (ANC) visit and tested for malaria, hookworm, and other parasitic infections and anemia at enrollment. All women enrolled in the study received presumptive treatment with sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine, iron and multi-vitamins and women diagnosed with helminthic infections were treated with albendazole. Women delivering a live, term birth, were also tested for maternal anemia, fetal anemia and presence of infection at delivery.
Principal Findings
Of the 706 women studied, at the first ANC visit, 27% had moderate/severe anemia and 71% of women were anemic overall. The infections with highest prevalence were hookworm (24%), urogenital schistosomiasis (17%), trichuria (10%), and malaria (9%). In adjusted and unadjusted analyses, moderate/severe anemia at first ANC visit was associated with the higher intensities of hookworm and P. falciparum microscopy-malaria infections. At delivery, 34% of women had moderate/severe anemia and 18% of infants' cord hemoglobin was consistent with fetal anemia. While none of the maternal infections were significantly associated with fetal anemia, moderate/severe maternal anemia was associated with fetal anemia.
Conclusions
More than one quarter of women receiving standard ANC with IPTp for malaria had moderate/severe anemia in pregnancy and high rates of parasitic infection. Thus, addressing the role of co-infections, such as hookworm, as well as under-nutrition, and their contribution to anemia is needed.
Author Summary
International guidelines recommend routine prevention and treatments which are safe and effective during pregnancy to reduce hookworm, malaria and other infections among pregnant women living in geographic areas where these infections are prevalent. Despite their effectiveness, programs to address common infections such as hookworm, schistosomiasis and malaria during pregnancy have not been widely adopted. Hookworm, malaria and other infections have been associated with anemia in children, but the studies on the impact of these infections on anemia in pregnancy have not been as clear. This study was undertaken to evaluate the prevalence of parasitic infections among women attending antenatal care which provided the nationally recommended malaria preventive treatment program in coastal Kenya. At the first ANC visit, more than 70% of women were anemic, nearly one-fourth had hookworm and about 10% had malaria. Women with high levels of hookworm or malaria infections were at risk of anemia.
doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0002724
PMCID: PMC3937317  PMID: 24587473
24.  Measuring Morbidity Associated with Urinary Schistosomiasis: Assessing Levels of Excreted Urine Albumin and Urinary Tract Pathologies 
Background
Urinary schistosomiasis is responsible for a variety of debilitating conditions; foremost perhaps are urinary tract pathologies (UTPs). Although portable ultrasonography can be used to detect UTPs visually, there is still a need for rapid morbidity assessment (henceforth referred to as RaMA) tools that can be deployed in the field during implementation, monitoring and evaluation of control programmes. We therefore aimed to determine associations between excreted urine-albumin, as measured using a HemoCue photometer, and UTPs, as detected by ultrasonography, in children and adults from an urinary schistosomiasis endemic area in Zanzibar.
Methodology/Principal Findings
In a survey of 140 school-children of both sexes (aged 9 to 15 yr) and 47 adult males (≥16 yr) on the island of Unguja, the prevalence of egg-patent urinary schistosomiasis was 36.4% (CI95 28.5–45.0%) and 46.8% (CI95 32.1–61.9%) (P = 0.14), and that of UTPs was 39.4% (CI95 31.0–48.3%) and 64.4% (CI95 48.8–78.1%) (P = 0.006), respectively. In school-children, raised urine-albumin concentrations (>40 mg/L) were associated, albeit non-significantly, with prevalence of infection (OR = 3.1, P = 0.070), but more specifically and significantly with the prevalence of micro-haematuria (OR = 76.7, P<0.0001). In adults, elevated urine-albumin excretion was associated with UTPs, particularly lesions of the bladder wall (OR = 8.4, P = 0.013). Albuminuria showed promising diagnostic performance, especially in school-aged children with sensitivity of 63.3% and specificity of 83.1% at detecting lower UTPs, i.e. bladder-wall lesions (ultrasonography as ‘gold standard’).
Conclusion/Significance
This study indicates that albuminuria assays could be used as a RaMA tool for monitoring UTP prevalence during control programmes, as well as a tool for selecting those with more chronic bladder-wall lesions without resorting to ultrasonography.
Author Summary
Urinary schistosomiasis is a debilitating disease caused by a parasitic worm that dwells in the blood vessels, particularly those surrounding the human bladder wall. Although not directly associated with high patient mortality, this disease is linked to both short-term morbidity, e.g. visible blood in urine (acute), as well as long-term sequelae, e.g. urinary tract pathologies (chronic). Numerous control programmes based upon chemotherapy have been implemented in sub-Saharan Africa in an attempt to reduce the burden of disease inflicted, particularly in children. Although there are rapid tests to assess the prevalence of acute manifestations of disease (i.e. blood in urine), namely urine-reagent strips, monitoring of chronic manifestations (i.e. urinary tract pathologies) is still rather laborious, time-consuming and requires specialised equipment, e.g. portable ultrasonography, as well as highly trained staff. This study has attempted to evaluate associations between albuminuria (albumin in urine, a new application for the HemoCue photometer) and urinary tract pathologies, and consequently assess this new biochemical marker as a potential rapid proxy of chronic disease sequelae typical in children in areas where urinary schistosomiasis is of public health importance.
doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0000526
PMCID: PMC2752803  PMID: 19806223
25.  Validation of the WHO Hemoglobin Color Scale Method 
Anemia  2014;2014:531670.
This study was carried out to evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of WHO color scale in screening anemia during blood donor selection in Sri Lanka. A comparative cross-sectional study was conducted by the Medical Laboratory Sciences Unit of University of Sri Jayewardenepura in collaboration with National Blood Transfusion Centre, Sri Lanka. A total of 100 subjects participated in this study. Hemoglobin value of each participant was analyzed by both WHO color scale method and cyanmethemoglobin method. Bland-Altman plot was used to determine the agreement between the two methods. Sensitivity, specificity, predictive values, false positive, and negative rates were calculated. The sensitivity of the WHO color scale was very low. The highest sensitivity observed was 55.55% in hemoglobin concentrations >13.1 g/dL and the lowest was 28.57% in hemoglobin concentrations between 7.1 and 9.0 g/dL. The mean difference between the WHO color scale and the cyanmethemoglobin method was 0.2 g/dL (95% confidence interval; 3.2 g/dL above and 2.8 g/dL below). Even though the WHO color scale is an inexpensive and portable method for field studies, from the overall results in this study it is concluded that WHO color scale is an inaccurate method to screen anemia during blood donations.
doi:10.1155/2014/531670
PMCID: PMC4009251  PMID: 24839555

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