Strengthen the Response to Iron Therapy

April 1, 2009

When a patient with iron deficiency anemia fails to respond to oral iron supplementation, consider whether foods he or she is consuming may be contributing to malabsorption. Such foods include coffee and tea (because they contain tannins) and cola drinks (a result of their phosphate content). In addition, because achlorhydria may interfere with iron absorption, encourage patients to eat foods rich in vitamin

When a patient with iron deficiency anemia fails to respond to oral iron supplementation, consider whether foods he or she is consuming may be contributing to malabsorption. Such foods include coffee and tea (because they contain tannins) and cola drinks (a result of their phosphate content). In addition, because achlorhydria may interfere with iron absorption, encourage patients to eat foods rich in vitamin C-or even take vitamin C supplements-before you decide that oral iron supplementation has failed.

-- Prashant Vaishnava, MD Boston

 

 

 

 

 

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