Multiple micronutrient supplementation during pregnancy in low-income countries: a meta-analysis of effects on stillbirths and on early and late neonatal mortality

Multiple micronutrient supplementation during pregnancy in low-income countries: a meta-analysis of effects on stillbirths and on early and late neonatal mortality

Multiple micronutrient deficiencies are common among women in low-income countries and may adversely affect pregnancy outcomes. This study aimed to conduct a meta-analysis of the effects on stillbirths, early and late neonatal mortality of multiple micronutrient (MMN) compared with iron and folic acid (Fe + FA) supplementation during pregnancy in recent randomised controlled trials.

Twelve randomised controlled trials were included in the analysis (Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, China, Guinea Bissau, Indonesia, Mexico, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan and Zimbabwe), all providing approximately 1 Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of MMN or Fe + FA to presumed HIV-negative women. MMN supplementation providing approximately 1 RDA of MMN did not decrease the risk of stillbirths, early neonatal mortality, late neonatal mortality, or perinatal mortality.

The meta-analysis provides consistent evidence that MMN supplementation providing approximately 1 RDA of MMN during pregnancy does not result in any reduction in stillbirths, early or late neonatal deaths compared to FE + FA alone.

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