Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Iron Deficiency Anemia in Iran: Prevalence Among Pregnant Women and Young Children

Similar articles

Iron deficiency anemia (IDA) poses a critical public health challenge, particularly affecting vulnerable groups such as pregnant women and young children. Comprehensive understanding of its prevalence is crucial for developing effective interventions. This article presents a detailed umbrella systematic review focusing on the prevalence of IDA among Iranian pregnant women and children, shedding light on regional disparities and emphasizing the need for multi-sectoral efforts to combat this health issue.

Systematic Review and Methodology

The study entailed a meticulous search through multiple databases, including Web of Science, Science Direct, PubMed, Scopus, and Google Scholar, for articles published up until April 2023. Seven meta-analyses, encompassing data from 189,627 pregnant women with an average age of 26 and 5,890 children under six years old, were consolidated. The methodological quality of these studies was assessed using the Assessment of Multiple Systematic Reviews (AMSTAR2) instrument, ensuring the reliability of the findings.

The prevalence of IDA was found to be 15.71% among pregnant women and 19.91% in young children. Notably, there were significant regional differences, with the prevalence rates varying between urban and rural areas and among different regions of Iran. Urban regions reported a prevalence of 16.32%, while rural areas had a lower rate of 12.75%. Geographically, the prevalence ranged from 7.97% in the western part of the country to 19.97% in the central region.

Regional Disparities and Public Health Implications

The study’s findings underscore the regional disparities in IDA prevalence. The eastern and northern regions exhibited similar rates at 17.8% and 17.82%, respectively, while the southern region had a prevalence of 13.45%. These variations highlight the need for tailored public health strategies to address the specific needs of different areas within Iran.

IDA remains a significant concern due to its potential impact on maternal and child health. The umbrella review classifies Iran’s IDA prevalence as mild according to WHO standards. However, the economic challenges facing the country, including sanctions and high inflation, are likely to exacerbate the situation, potentially increasing IDA rates in the coming years.

Actionable Insights

  • Targeted nutritional programs in regions with higher prevalence rates.
  • Increased access to iron supplements for pregnant women and young children.
  • Enhanced public health awareness campaigns focusing on iron-rich diets.
  • Policy interventions addressing economic barriers to nutrition.

The results of this comprehensive review indicate an urgent need for coordinated multi-sectoral efforts to improve the iron status of pregnant women and children in Iran. Addressing the socio-economic factors contributing to IDA will be essential for reducing its prevalence and ensuring better health outcomes for these vulnerable populations.

Original Article: BMC Pregnancy Childbirth. 2024 May 22;24(1):381. doi: 10.1186/s12884-024-06575-z.

You can follow our news on our Telegram and LinkedIn accounts.

Subscribe to our newsletter

To be updated with all the latest news, offers and special announcements.

Latest article