Maja Georgsen, M.D., Maria Christine Krog, M.D., Anne-Sofie Korsholm, M.D., Ph.D., Helene Westring Hvidman, M.D., Ph.D., Astrid Marie Kolte, M.D., Ph.D., Andreas Stribolt Rigas, M.D., Ph.D., Henrik Ullum, M.D., Ph.D., Søren Ziebe, D.Sc., Anders Nyboe Andersen, M.D., D.M.Sc., Henriette Svarre Nielsen, M.D., D.M.Sc., Morten Bagge Hansen, M.D., D.M.Sc.
To study whether low serum ferritin (s-ferritin) levels are associated with recurrent pregnancy loss (RPL), and whether low s-ferritin predicts the risk of another pregnancy loss or the ability to conceive.
Fertility clinic at a university hospital.
Eighty-four women referred to the RPL Unit and 153 women of reproductive age with no known fertility problem. s-Ferritin levels were measured in serum samples taken before pregnancy attempt.
Main Outcome Measure(s)
s-Ferritin levels were correlated to pregnancy history, ability to conceive, and time to conception during the first 2 years after sampling. Furthermore, s-ferritin levels were correlated to outcome of the first pregnancy after referral for RPL.
Women with RPL had lower s-ferritin than the comparison group, 39.9 μg/L versus 62.2 μg/L, and had a higher prevalence of low iron stores (s-ferritin <30 μg/L), 35.7% versus 13.7%. We found an inverse relationship between s-ferritin level and number of pregnancy losses before referral. We did not find s-ferritin level to be associated with ability to conceive or time to pregnancy in either group. Nor did s-ferritin level predict the risk of losing the first pregnancy after referral for RPL.
The inverse relationship between s-ferritin levels and previous pregnancy losses suggests that low s-ferritin is associated with a more severe reproductive disturbance in women with RPL. Whether low s-ferritin is causally related to RPL and if such women could benefit from iron supplementation to achieve a live birth warrants further investigation.