Early Postpartum Hemoglobin Less Than 10 g/dL Is Associated with Future Maternal Atherosclerotic Morbidity Academic Article uri icon


  • Objective: Anemia is associated with increased cardiovascular morbidity in the general population. Anemia is common during pregnancy. We examined the association between anemia at the very early postpartum period and long-term atherosclerotic-related morbidity. Patients and methods: A retrospective study including women who gave birth between 1988 and 2013 was conducted. The women were divided into two groups according to hemoglobin (Hb) value on the first day after delivery: Hb <10 g/dL and Hb ≥10 g/dL. We examined the rates of hospitalization due to atherosclerotic-related morbidity, which were classified into minor and major events. The follow-up period was from the index birth until either hospitalization or the end of study period. Survival estimates were calculated by Kaplan-Meier survival analysis. Cox proportional hazards models were used to evaluate whether Hb <10 gr/dL is an independent risk factor for long-term atherosclerotic events. Results: The study population included 30,088 (37.40%) women with Hb <10 g/dL and 50,354 (63%) women with Hb ≥10 g/dL at the index birth. The hospitalization incidence density was higher in the Hb <10 g/dL group versus the Hb ≥10 g/dL group, for total atherosclerotic- related hospitalizations (4.35 vs. 3.76, p < 0.001), and hospitalization for major events (1.83 vs. 1.51, p < 0.001) and minor events (2.60 vs. 2.31, p < 0.001). In Cox proportional hazards models, it was demonstrated that Hb <10 g/dL was independently associated with total hospitalizations (HR 1.13; CI: 1.04-1.24 p = 0.004) and hospitalizations for major events (HR 1.16; CI: 1.01-1.34 p = 0.034) Conclusions: Hb <10 g/dL at the very early postpartum period might be a marker for long-term atherosclerotic-related morbidity.

publication date

  • March 27, 2018