An intravenous iron infusion is a way to increase the body’s iron levels quickly. It’s a more immediate treatment than supplements or dietary changes. A doctor may prescribe an Iron Infusion in situations where anaemia is severe.
Why is Iron important?
Iron is essential for the body to make haemoglobin. Haemoglobin carries oxygen from the lungs to the body and builds new cells and makes energy.
If your iron levels are low you may feel tired, breathless, have brittle nails, hair loss, difficulty concentrating, frequent headaches, and mouth ulcers.
Before the infusion
The doctor will take a thorough history and do a physical examination to assess the cause of your anaemia. It is important that the reason for low iron levels is fully investigated.
What is an IV Iron Infusion?
Intravenous Iron Infusions give iron directly into the bloodstream through a vein. A needle or cannula is placed in the vein (usually in the back of the hand) and is attached to a drip that contains an iron/saline solution. The fluid is slowly “dripped” into the vein and mixes with the blood in your body.
Why might I need IV Iron?
The most common way to treat iron deficiency anaemia is to take iron tablets or liquid. This works well for most people and is usually tried first. However, an Iron Infusion may be required if you are;
Unable to tolerate iron tablets/liquid
Unable to absorb iron by the gut
Not responding to iron tablets due to chronic health problems
Have chronic kidney or heart failure