Management of iron deficiency anemia requires iron replacement with oral ferrous sulfate or ferrous gluconate. Many patients cannot tolerate or absorb these preparations because of gastrointestinal adverse effects. Iron dextran is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for parenteral treatment of iron deficiency anemia and is the drug of choice for treating adults. While iron dextran is generally safe and effective, there are a variety of adverse effects including arthralgias, myalgias, nausea and vomiting, anaphylaxis, and death.1 Intravenous (IV) ferric sodium gluconate (Ferrlecit; Sanofi-Aventis, Dagenham, England) is FDA approved for the treatment of iron deficiency anemia associated with patients with end-stage renal disease who are hemodialysis dependent but is not approved for the treatment of iron deficiency anemia associated with other patient populations. We examined the efficacy and tolerability of this compound in patients without kidney disease treated in outpatient clinics at Naval Medical Center San Diego (NMCSD), San Diego, Calif.
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