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close this book04. Micronutrients and Pregnancy Outcome
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentSummary
View the documentIntroduction
Open this folder and view contentsIron
View the documentVitamin A
View the documentFolic Acid
View the documentZinc
View the documentIodine
View the documentMagnesium
View the documentCalcium
View the documentVitamin C
View the documentVitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B6, (Pyridoxine), Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)
View the documentDiscussion
View the documentReferences


Iodine is an essential substrate for synthesis of thyroid hormones. When the physiological requirements of iodine are not met in a given population, a series of functional and developmental abnormalities occur and, when iodine deficiency is severe, endemic goitre and cretinism, endemic mental retardation, decreased fertility rate, increased perinatal death and infant mortality. Endemic cretinism knows a neurological and a myxoedematous form, with mixed forms. In affected populations one finds mental retardation, deafmutism, spastic diplegia, squint, hypothyroidism and dwarfism (Delange 1994). Although the best known clinical sign of iodine deficiency is goitre, this does not represent the mayor health problem. Iodine deficiency during pregnancy is responsible for development defects of the foetus and the pathologies associated with endemic goitre. Iodine supplementation studies have shown beyond doubt that supplementing iodine during pregnancy can reverse the described abnormalities (Pharoah 1993). Maternal health seems not directly affected by iodine deficiency. Salt fortification is now widely practised throughout the world with an impressive decrease in associated morbidity (Delange 1998).