anemia%20-%20iron-deficiency%20(pediatric)
ANEMIA - IRON-DEFICIENCY (PEDIATRIC)

Iron deficiency (ID) is the most common nutritional deficiency in children & reportedly 3x more common than iron-deficiency anemia, but does not always develop into anemia.

Neonates & children may have delayed growth & development; adolescents may show decrements of learning such as behavioral abnormalities.

Iron-deficiency anemia is the most advanced stage of iron deficiency resulted from a protracted imbalance between iron intake & demand.

Characterized by low hemoglobin & hematocrit levels, reduction or depletion of iron stores, low serum iron levels & decreased transferrin saturation.

Patient Education

  • Routine Iron supplements should be given in young children, especially preterm or low birth weight infants
    • Iron supplements may turn stools black or dark green
    • Iron replacement therapy is best absorbed on an empty stomach, can be given/taken with food especially if there is gastrointestinal (GI) upset
  • Recurrence is usually related to non-adherence to treatment or recurrence of underlying disorder, especially gastrointestinal bleeding
  • Mothers should be reminded of breast feeding exclusively 4 to 6 months after birth
  • Discourage early introduction of unmodified cow’s milk
    • Unmodified (nonformula) cow’s milk increases intestinal blood loss in infants as compared with formula fed or breast fed
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