Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Regular multivitamin use near time of conception significantly reduces preeclampsia risk

28.07.2006
Women who are considering becoming pregnant may significantly reduce their risk of developing a common life-threatening complication called preeclampsia by taking a multivitamin supplement regularly three months before conception and during the first trimester of pregnancy. This finding is being reported in a University of Pittsburgh study available online now through an "advance access" feature of the American Journal of Epidemiology. The paper is scheduled for publication in the Sept. 1 print issue of the journal.

Overall, women who used multivitamins regularly showed a 45 percent reduction in preeclampsia risk, according to the study. However, results were even more remarkable for women who were not overweight prior to pregnancy.

"Our data show that women who are not overweight before pregnancy and who used multivitamins at least once a week before conception and in the first three months of pregnancy reduced their risk of preeclampsia by a striking 72 percent compared to those who didn't take a multivitamin during this time period," said Lisa Bodnar, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.D., assistant professor of epidemiology at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health (GSPH). "At this time, multivitamin use makes little apparent difference in preeclampsia rates for women who are overweight before pregnancy. Even so, the results suggest that regular multivitamin use in the pre-pregnancy period may help to prevent preeclampsia."

Also known as toxemia, preeclampsia affects about 7 percent of first pregnancies and is a leading cause of premature delivery and maternal and fetal death. Signs of preeclampsia include high blood pressure, protein in the urine and swelling of the hands and feet. Untreated, the condition may progress to the far more serious eclampsia, which can lead to seizures, coma and death.

Preeclampsia is more prevalent in the developing world, where it accounts for up to 80 percent of maternal deaths. And while treatment is more readily available in developed countries, preeclampsia remains the leading cause of maternal death. Infants born to mothers with preeclampsia have a risk of mortality five times greater than those born to women with normal pregnancies. In the United States alone, nearly 15 percent of preterm deliveries are a result of preeclampsia.

Dr. Bodnar and her colleagues evaluated data from 1,835 women who were enrolled in the University of Pittsburgh's Pregnancy Exposures and Preeclampsia Prevention Study between 1997 and 2001. Overall, the prevalence of preeclampsia was 4.4 percent for non-multivitamin users and 3.8 percent for those who used multivitamins, with the most significant differences being noted among women who had a body mass index (a common body weight measure) of less than 25. Most authorities define overweight at a BMI of 25 and obesity as a BMI of 30 or above.

Because multivitamins contain many nutrients, it is difficult to know the exact mechanism by which the risk of preeclampsia is reduced, noted Dr. Bodnar, who also is an assistant investigator at the university-affiliated Magee-Womens Research Institute (MWRI). Other recent studies have shown limited benefits – and some risk – associated with large doses of vitamins C and E in women at high risk of preeclampsia. "However, the study does show further evidence that nutrition is relevant for the prevention of preeclampsia," she said.

Although Dr. Bodnar and her colleagues tried to adjust for possible complicating factors such as smoking, exercise habits, fruit- and vegetable-intake, demographic and other socioeconomic factors, it is possible that the study findings could be attributed to other differences among multivitamin supplement users and nonusers that investigators did not identify. In addition, the analysis depended on self-reporting of multivitamin use rather than a random assignment of supplement use. Even so, the association between multivitamin use and diminished risk of preeclampsia strongly continues inasmuch as adjustments are possible.

"Preeclampsia is a potentially devastating condition for mother and baby," observed James M. Roberts, M.D., director of the Magee-Womens Research Institute and senior author of the paper. "It may be that taking a multivitamin prior to conception positively influences embryonic implantation, which is a physiologic process known to be abnormal in preeclampsia. More study is needed to clarify these findings."

Researchers are unsure of the reasons why multivitamin use appears to have no benefit to preeclampsia risk in overweight women, Dr. Bodnar said. "It may be that typical multivitamins, which contain low nutrient doses, may not be adequate to overcome the metabolic challenges associated with the development of preeclampsia along with being overweight and pregnant," she added. "But again, more study is needed to test these ideas."

Michele Baum | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.upmc.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Routing gene therapy directly into the brain
07.12.2017 | Boston Children's Hospital

nachricht New Hope for Cancer Therapies: Targeted Monitoring may help Improve Tumor Treatment
01.12.2017 | Berliner Institut für Gesundheitsforschung / Berlin Institute of Health (BIH)

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

Im Focus: Successful Mechanical Testing of Nanowires

With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong

Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...

Im Focus: Virtual Reality for Bacteria

An interdisciplinary group of researchers interfaced individual bacteria with a computer to build a hybrid bio-digital circuit - Study published in Nature Communications

Scientists at the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) have managed to control the behavior of individual bacteria by connecting them to a...

Im Focus: A space-time sensor for light-matter interactions

Physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (run jointly by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics) have developed an attosecond electron microscope that allows them to visualize the dispersion of light in time and space, and observe the motions of electrons in atoms.

The most basic of all physical interactions in nature is that between light and matter. This interaction takes place in attosecond times (i.e. billionths of a...

Im Focus: A transistor of graphene nanoribbons

Transistors based on carbon nanostructures: what sounds like a futuristic dream could be reality in just a few years' time. An international research team working with Empa has now succeeded in producing nanotransistors from graphene ribbons that are only a few atoms wide, as reported in the current issue of the trade journal "Nature Communications."

Graphene ribbons that are only a few atoms wide, so-called graphene nanoribbons, have special electrical properties that make them promising candidates for the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

Blockchain is becoming more important in the energy market

05.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Making fuel out of thick air

08.12.2017 | Life Sciences

Rules for superconductivity mirrored in 'excitonic insulator'

08.12.2017 | Information Technology

Smartphone case offers blood glucose monitoring on the go

08.12.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>