Iron deficiency afflicts about 60% of dialysis patients and about 30% of non-dialysis-dependent CKD patients (ND-CKD). The role of iron deficiency in determining anemia in CKD patients is so relevant that guidelines from the Kidney Disease Improving Global Outcomes (KDIGO) initiative recommend treating it before starting with erythropoiesis-stimulating agents. KDIGO guidelines suggest oral iron therapy because it is commonly available and inexpensive, although it is often characterized by low bioavailability and low compliance due to adverse effects.
A new-generation oral iron therapy is now available and seems to be promising. We therefore conducted a study to determine whether an association of iron sucrose, folic acid and vitamins C, B6, B12, can improve anemia in ND-CKD patients, stage 3-5. Our study shows that iron sucrose is a safe and effective oral iron therapy and that it is capable of correcting anemia in ND-CKD patients, although it does not seem to replete low iron stores.
Keywords: iron deficiency, chronic kidney disease, CKD, anemia, oral iron