Iron infusions involve giving iron directly into the bloodstream/ vein. It is done through a drip containing iron mixed with saline administered over 30-60 minutes.
Frequently Asked Questioins
How do I know if I’m iron deficient?
Iron is an important mineral required to form haemoglobin in your red blood cells. Haemoglobin carries oxygen to the cells and lack of iron (resulting in anaemia or reduced haemoglobin) can have multiple symptoms including:
- Leg Pains.
- Reduced concentration.
- Shortness of breath.
- Heavy periods in women.
If you present with these symptoms or think that you may be iron deficient – discuss it with your doctor. Iron deficiency can be determined with a simple blood test.
Oral iron supplements (tablets or liquids) are the most common way to treat iron deficiency. This is usually tried first.
When might you need an iron infusion?
- Oral iron therapy resulting in side effects.
- Non-compliance with oral iron therapy.
- Oral iron therapy is ineffective.
- Severe iron deficiency requiring a fast correction.
- Ongoing blood loss, for example, heavy periods
What happens after Iron Deficiency is confirmed?
Once the blood tests confirm an Iron deficiency your doctor will organise investigations to determine a cause so that recurrent iron deficiency could be avoided. During the consultation options to correct the iron and anaemia are discussed. Your doctor will go through the iron infusion procedure, this is done as a day procedure and hospital admission is not required.
What Happens on the day of the Iron Infusion?
- Fasting is not required on the day of infusion so you can have breakfast and/or lunch.
- Take all your usual medications.
- The procedure takes a total of 60-120 minutes including waiting in the clinic for observation following the infusion.
- You are safe to drive home once the post-infusion check is complete.
- A nurse and doctor are available in case you have any side effects