Association between Iron Deficiency Anemia and Febrile Convulsion in 3- to 60-Month-Old Children: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Document Type: Review Article

Authors

1 Center of Medical Education Studies and Development, Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran

2 Thalassemia Research Center, Department of Community Medicine, School of Medicine, Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran

3 Department of Epidemiology, School of Health and Nutrition, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran

Abstract

Abstract Controversy exists regarding the association between Iron Deficiency Anemia (IDA), iron status, and Febrile Convulsion (FC) during childhood. In this article, a systematic review and meta-analysis is conducted in order to determine possible association and the degree of association between these statuses and FC. To identify all studies related to IDA and FC, various references such as MEDLINE (PubMed), Embase (OVID), Web of sciences (Thomson Reuters) and Google scholar were searched (up until 15 January 2013). Heterogeneity was assessed using the Q statistic, Tau2, and I2. Additionally, subgroup analyses were performed. The outcome of primary interest was the overall Odds Ratio (OR) of FC for IDA and standard mean differences (SMD) of ferritin level. In total, 21 articles were considered to assess the association between IDA and FC. Anemia was more prevalent among the FC patients compared with the controls and the overall OR was 1.52 (95% CI=1.03 to 2.25). In addition, the pooled OR for 17 studies performed in the populations with low and moderate prevalence of anemia was 2.04 (95% CI=1.46 to 2.85). Furthermore, 12 studies assessed the association between the ferritin level and FC. The overall SMD was -0.02 with a 95% CI of -0.09 to 0.06. Besides, the pooled SMD of ferritin was -0.57 (95% CI=-0.7 to -0.46) in 6 studies reporting no difference between the FC and the control group with respect to temperature. IDA was associated with a moderate increased risk of FC in children, particularly in the areas with low and moderate prevalence of anemia.