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Stressful pregnancies can lead to low iron counts in newborns
Infants born to mothers who experience stress in the first trimester are more likely to have low iron concentrations in the blood, according to the results of a new study.
The maternal and newborn health research analysed the cord blood from 140 infants and found that the levels of serum ferritin were significantly lower in babies of mothers who experienced stress in the first three months of their pregnancy.
Conducted by scientists from Ashkelon Academic College and Barzilai Medical Center in Israel and the University of Michigan, the study is the first to identify maternal stress in early pregnancy as a risk factor for low iron status in newborns.
Doctors explained that iron has an important role in organ development and having low concentrations of serum ferritin can mean babies are more likely to suffer from physical and mental "delays" as they age.
Lead author Dr Rinat Armony-Sivan advised that children born to stressed mothers should undergo additional blood tests at 12 months to ascertain if they are at risk of iron deficiency.
Posted by Carla Mackenzie
World Congress 2015