Many haematological changes occur during pregnancy to accommodate maternal and fetal needs. Thus, monitoring of this patient groups’ haematological indices are imperative. International guidelines recommend minimum haematological sampling at booking and 28 weeks.
A prospective audit was conducted between January and April 2012. Postnatal patient charts were randomly sampled, and relevant data extracted. This was entered into a secure database. Haematological indices from throughout pregnancy and within 1 week of the postnatal period were extracted from institutional laboratory systems retrospectively.
176 patients were included in our sample group, with a total of 757 samples taken. The average age of patients was 31. Within this sample, there were 100 vaginal deliveries and 76 caesarean deliveries, with 3 post-partum haemorrhages. Birth weights ranged from 2.37 kg to 4.9 kg. 155 patients had more than 2 sets of haematological investigations during pregnancy, with 83 patients having more than 5 measurements. 39.7% had haematinic investigations performed, with 48 of these patients had sub-optimal ferritin levels. Only 3 patients were defined as anaemic before 12 weeks gestation.
There are currently no national guidelines regarding appropriate haematological investigations in pregnancy. This study demonstrates the demographics and frequency of haematological investigation in our population. We have also identified the proportion of anaemia demonstrated at varying gestations.
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