J Assoc Physicians India 2001 Aug;49:795-8
Calcium supplementation in pre-eclampsia.
Wanchu M, Malhotra S, Khullar M.
Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, Government Medical College, Chandigarh.
OBJECTIVE: The objective of this prospective, open, randomised trial was to determine the role of calcium supplementation in preventing pre-eclampsia.
METHODS: One hundred uncomplicated normotensive primigravidae were enrolled in the study before 20 weeks of pregnancy. Fifty each were randomised to receive either two gram elemental calcium daily from 20 weeks of gestation to delivery (study group) or no calcium supplementation (control group). Prior to 20 weeks of gestation each underwent a complete clinical and laboratory evaluation. Serum and urine calcium was measured first at 20 weeks of gestation and then at 24-28 weeks and at 32-36 weeks of pregnancy.
RESULTS: Patient characteristics at the start of therapy were similar in the two groups. Blood pressure profile was similar throughout pregnancy in the groups. The incidence of pre-eclampsia was similar (18% in the study group and 16% in the control group), but severe pre-eclampsia was significantly less in the study group. There was no significant difference between the two groups with regards to intra- and postpartum characteristics, perinatal outcome and maternal or fetal side effects. Serum and urinary calcium levels did not differ between the two groups.
CONCLUSION: While calcium supplementation did not lower the incidence of pre-eclampsia it did reduce its severity.