J Med Assoc Thai 2020; 103 (12):1262-8

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Prevalence of Iron Deficiency in Infants of Diabetic Mothers at the Age of 6 to 12 Months
Engkakul P Mail, Kositamongkol S

Background: Iron deficiency (ID) and iron deficiency anemia (IDA) are worldwide problems in infants. The infants of diabetic mothers (IDMs) usually have low iron storage at birth. Therefore, they are at risk for developing ID and IDA during late infancy.

Objective: To determine the prevalence of ID and IDA in IDMs aged 6 to 12 months and to identify the risk factors associated with abnormal iron status.

Materials and Methods: The present study was a prospective descriptive study conducted in healthy, full-term, IDMs between the ages of 6 to 12 months. Growth and dietary history of IDMs as well as maternal history of diabetes were evaluated. Anemia and iron status were determined by hemoglobin, serum ferritin, and transferrin saturation.

Results: Of the 50 IDMs, the prevalence of ID was 46%, and iron depletion was 14%. IDA was found in 11 IDMs. Although the gender, gestational age, birthweight, and the age of complementary food introduction were not found to be associated with abnormal iron status, infants with ID and iron depletion were more likely to be breastfed, or breastfed longer than six months, when compared to iron sufficient infants (p<0.001). No exclusively breastfed infants had iron sufficiency in the study.

Conclusion: There was a high prevalence of ID and IDA in IDMs. Therefore, screening for iron status along with anemia is crucial in IDMs at an earlier age. Moreover, iron supplementation starting at four months should be considered in IDMs who were exclusively or mainly breastfed.

Keywords: Anemia, Iron deficiency, Iron deficiency anemia, Infants of diabetes mothers

DOI: doi.org/10.35755/jmedassocthai.2020.12.11055

Received 13 April 2020 | Revised 8 July 2020 | Accepted 17 July 2020

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