Iron deficiency anemia

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husband has been diagnosed with iron deficieny anemia.  Was referred by doc for colonoscopy and endoscopy but we have decided against this as he had a stent fitted in January and is on Ticagrelor to stop blood clots forming around stent.  If they cause even the slightest damage when doing those procedures he could have a heavy bleed and as he doesnt have a common blood type we dont want to risk this as a blood transfusion may be delayed while they get suitable blood.

his haemaglobin level is 81, ferritin is 5 and folate is 5.2.  What I would like to know is what iron tablet people recommend that does not cause too many side effects as we have to discuss this with the doc on Friday.

any suggestions would be helpful

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12 Replies

  • Posted

    With his health problem and with it, concerns, I'd be inclined to ask for iron infusions instead of tablets.

    • Posted

      Thank you for your reply.  We will certainly discuss this with the doc. The article on capsule endoscopy was interesting and informative and this is something else to discuss. I am grateful you took the time to reply and would have answered earlier but your reply was being vetted.
    • Posted

      You're most welcome. Sorry for the brief reply but my replies sometimes don't get published because I either provide too much detaill, information or links.

      I have iron infusions as I have Crohn's disease and the tablets and fluid forms irritate my stomach. I also take SPA Tone sachets x 2 a day to maintain my iron levels. 

      I've had 4 endoscopies, a gastroscopy and a sidmoscopy but if I should ever need to be looked internally again, I'm insisting on a capsule endoscopy. One can only get lucky so many times... The damage caused by a normal procedure can be life threatening and I am not going to take the risk any more. I have Crohn's / colitis.

      All the best,


    • Posted


      went to doc with husband this morning.   Saw a different doc than usual.  She was really good and printed of his bloods so she could go through them with us.  Also she actually listened to what we had to say.

      i asked about capsule endoscopy and she will look in to it but it is not something normally done in this part of Scotland so we will have to wait and see.

      we bought liquid iron ourselves and fortunately it is one she approves of but not obtainable on nhs so we will carry on buying it.

      she has taken more blood and is writing for more information from the hospital thet fitted his stent to see what his haemaglobin and ferritin levels were before he had it done to see if there was already a problem although she didnt think they would have fitted it if there was.

      she is going to take it one step at a time rather than rush into invasive procedures so Im really glad you replied to me.

    • Posted

      Thank you for your lovely message. 

      I'm so pleased you got to see a different doctor and that she's going to look into the capsule endoscopy. Also that she's investigating your husband's anaemia and seeing if it was already existent around the time of him having the stent fitted. I hope his blood count and iron levels are replaced sufficiently and soon, but am a bit unhappy that he wasn't offered iron infusions and you're having to provide your own. 

      Great tip: Dried fruits contain iron and help boost the blood count too... make a healthy snack too.

      Best of health to you and yours,

      Frankie x

    • Posted

      Will let you know how it goes when we get more results and info from doc but she is on holiday for a couple of weeks.

      meanwhile I will get him some dried fruit next time we are shopping.  He has been eating fresh fruit and walnuts and liver (not all at once) to try to boost his iron.

      thanks again for your advice.

  • Posted

    Well, hubby ended up in hospital last week  and got and endoscopy.  They found a bit that they thought could be a bleed site so they cauterised it and gave him an iron infusion.  The endoscopy was awful according to him and on Wednesday he got an appointment to go for a colonoscopy on 3rd May. 

    We went to see the doc yesterday (not the one we wanted to see) and he has got into a right state.

    she obviously never read his notes properly as the first thing she said was he was a smoker.  When he said he gave up at the beginning of January she said she could smell it as she was a non smoker. For goodness sake how can you smell it after 4 months.  Then he asked for the tablets he had been given before for gout as the blood thinners he is on  can cause gout and bleeding.  She said she had discussed these tablets with him a few months ago and they were not given out anymore. We had no idea what she was talking about as he hasnt had these tablets for a couple of years and he has never seen her before as she is not his usual doc.

    he then tried to explain that he didnt want to have the colonoscopy at the moment as he wanted time for the other trapeatments to work.

    she went on and on about bowel cancer and he had to have it treated early.  As none if the other docs or surgeons at hospital had even mentioned this it came as a shock to him and she wouldnt entertain any other causes for his anemia.  He hasnt lost weight, has no change in bowel habits and no stomach pain.  Only pain in his calf for a few minutes when he first starts walking and feeling a bit tired during the afternoon but these are things that happen when you are on the blood thinner that they gave him after his stent.

    why would she make him believe that iron deficiency anemia is usually caused by bowel cancer.

    sorry this is so long winded but I was trying to state the facts of whats been happening

    • Posted

      I'm sorry I've just seen your post.

      I hope the colonoscopy capsule went well and the results aren't GI related. They like to scare with bowel cancer but anaemia is not rare and not completely related to bowel cancer. Anaemia could be caused by a poor diet - too little iron rich foods, or even the ability to absorb and retain it when on medications. 

      But it's good news that your husband got an iron infusion. He must feel much better for it. Hope so.

      All the best of health. x

    • Posted


      well hubby has colonoscopy and it was okay too.

      if the docs had only listened to him in the first place when he said it was the ticagrelor tablets that caused the problem he wouldn't have had to go through all that.  One doc wrote to his heart surgeon and he said to stop taking the tablet immediately. He did and felt better within days.

      we are just waiting on the results of his latest blood test to see how much his Hb has improved.

      thankyou again for recommending iron infusion as he had to have a second one and it made a big difference..

      hopefully now things are going back to normal and they can leave him alone for a while.

      thank you so much for your support.

    • Posted

      Poor man. I'm glad he's got you to research stuff and speak up for him, else he'd be a right mess.

      Seriously though, I'm so pleased he's improving. Keep up the great job you're doing. x

    • Posted

      Blood test back and everything seems to be normal.

      Thank you so much for your support through what has been a very trying and worrying time.

    • Posted

      That's fantastic news! I'm so pleased for your husband and you. 

      Glad I was of some help. x 


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