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Systematic review and meta-analysis of prolactin and iron deficiency in peripartum cardiomyopathy

  • Cherubin, Sinaida1
  • Peoples, Taylar2
  • Gillard, Jessica3
  • Lakhal-Littleton, Samira3
  • Kurinczuk, Jennifer J1
  • Nair, Manisha1
  • 1 Oxford University, Oxford, UK , Oxford
  • 2 Columbia University, New York, New York, USA , New York
  • 3 Oxford University, Oxford, Oxfordshire, UK , Oxford
Published Article
Open Heart
Publication Date
Oct 15, 2020
DOI: 10.1136/openhrt-2020-001430
PMID: 33060142
PMCID: PMC7566429
PubMed Central


Objectives We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of studies that compared levels of molecular biomarkers in women with peripartum cardiomyopathy (PPCM) to those in healthy pregnant and postpartum women to: (1) assess the evidence for prolactin (PRL) metabolism in PPCM, (2) ascertain the evidence for biomarkers of iron deficiency in PPCM, (3) identify other biomarkers associated with PPCM. Methods We searched Medline, Embase, Cumulated Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) and the Global Health Library from inception without language restriction for studies that compared biomarkers levels in PPCM cases to healthy controls. Pooled standardised mean difference (SMD) was generated using a random effects model for the difference in levels of biomarkers. Results Two studies assessed the association of PRL with PPCM, and reported that PPCM cases have higher levels of total PRL. No studies investigated iron metabolism in PPCM. Other biomarkers associated with PPCM included serum levels of natriuretic peptides (SMD=3.77, 95% CI 0.71 to 6.82), albumin (SMD=-0.67, 95% CI -1.01 to -0.32), C-reactive protein (SMD=1.67, 95% CI 0.22 to 3.12), selenium (SMD=-0.73, 95% CI -1.58 to 0.12), cardiac troponins (SMD=1.06, 95% CI 0.33 to 1.80), creatinine (SMD=0.51, 95% CI 0.33 to 0.69), white bloodcells (SMD=0.44, 95 % CI 0.07 to 0.82), haemoglobin (SMD=-0.45, 95% CI -0.64 to-0.26). Conclusions More robust molecular studies are needed to explore the association between prolactin and PPCM in human subjects and to determine the extent to which iron deficiency (with or without anaemia) contributes to the risk of PPCM.

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