The influence of iron supplementation in pregnant women to the occurrence of low birth weight (LBW) babies in Palu, Central Sulawesi

Sri Restu(1*), Djaswadi Dasuki(2), R. Detty Siti Nurdiati Z(3)

(1) Health Polytechnic of Palu, Central Sulawesi,
(2) Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Sardjito Hospital, Yogyakarta
(3) Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Sardjito Hospital, Yogyakarta
(*) Corresponding Author


Low birth weight (LBW) babies remains a major problem world wide as it causes a high rate of
neonatal morbidity and mortality. One effort to reduce the prevalence of LBW babies is by
providing iron supplementation to the pregnant women. The aim of this study was to examine
the relationship between iron supplementation program and prevalence of LBW babies in Palu,
Central Sulawesi. This was an observational study with case control design. Subjects were all
LBW babies from mothers that had accepted iron supplementation during pregnancy. Sample
size in this study was 87 for case and 87 for control. Bivariate analysis showed that iron
supplementation that not comply the program had a significant correlation with prevalence of
LBW babies (p=0.01). Other significant factors include abnormal hemoglobin level (p=0.01),
body mass index (BMI) (p=0.02), educational level (p=0.02), multiparity (p=0.03), and
gestational age (prematurity) (p=0.03). Multivariate analysis revealed that the strongest risk
factor for the occurrence of LBW babies was iron supplementation that not comply the program
(OR= 3.82; 95% CI: 1.77- 8.22). Other risk factors were hemoglobin level (OR= 3.45; 95% CI:
1.59-7.49), BMI (OR= 2.27; 95% CI: 1.05-4.91), gestational age (OR= 3.11; 95% CI: 1.45-
6.67), multiparity (OR= 2.98, 95% CI: 1.36-6.51), and educational level (OR= 2.38, 95% CI:
1.12-5.03). Based on the analysis, the strongest risk factors that affected the prevalence of LBW
was iron supplementation, abnormal hemoglobin level, gestational age, multiparity and education
level. In conclusion, iron supplementation during pregnancy that not comply with the program
was the strongest risk factor of LBW babies. The prevalence of LBW babies can be reduced by
controlling of iron supplementation, hemoglobin level, BMI, gestational age, parity and education.


iron supplementation - pregnant women - LBW babies


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