A prospective randomized, controlled trial of intravenous versus oral iron for moderate iron deficiency anaemia of pregnancy

Authors


Alhossain Khalafallah MD, Launceston General Hospital, Launceston, TAS 7250, Australia.
(fax: +61363353388; e-mail: khalafallah@dhhs.tas.gov.au).

Abstract

Abstract.  Khalafallah A, Dennis A, Bates J, Bates G, Robertson IK, Smith L, Ball MJ, Seaton D, Brain T, Rasko JEJ Launceston General Hospital (LGH), Australia; University of Tasmania, Australia; and Centenary Institute, University of Sydney, NSW, Australia) A prospective randomized, controlled trial of intravenous versus oral iron for moderate iron deficiency anaemia of pregnancy. J Intern Med 2010; 268: 286–295.

Background.  Iron deficiency anaemia is the most common deficiency disorder in the world, affecting more than one billion people, with pregnant women at particular risk.

Objectives and design. We conducted a single site, prospective, nonblinded randomized-controlled trial to compare the efficacy, safety, tolerability and compliance of standard oral daily iron versus intravenous iron

Subjects.  We prospectively screened 2654 pregnant women between March 2007 and January 2009 with a full blood count and iron studies, of which 461 (18%) had moderate IDA. Two hundred women matched for haemoglobin concentration and serum ferritin level were recruited.

Interventions.  Patients were randomized to daily oral ferrous sulphate 250 mg (elemental iron 80 mg) with or without a single intravenous iron polymaltose infusion.

Results.  Prior to delivery, the intravenous plus oral iron arm was superior to the oral iron only arm as measured by the increase in haemoglobin level (mean of 19.5 g/L vs. 12 g/L; P < 0.001); the increase in mean serum ferritin level (222 μg/L vs. 18 ug/L; P < 0.001); and the percentage of mothers with ferritin levels below 30 μg/L (4.5% vs. 79%; P < 0.001). A single dose of intravenous iron polymaltose was well tolerated without significant side effects.

Conclusions.  Our data indicate that intravenous iron polymaltose is safe and leads to improved efficacy and iron stores compared to oral iron alone in pregnancy-related IDA.

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