Question: I have all the symptoms of very low iron, and am very interested in IV iron therapy. I have taken several types of iron over the past 15 months, but my symptoms continue to get worse.
Dr. Brownstein's Answer:
I have treated many patients for low iron. Although iron IVs can be extremely beneficial, I use oral iron supplements much more frequently. Let me provide you with a few tricks to help your body absorb iron better. First, iron absorption is inhibited
by medications that block stomach acid production, such as the proton-pump inhibiters, such as Nexium. If you are on these medications, it is best to try to wean yourself off of them. Next, iron is better absorbed when taken with vitamin C. Finally, many patients have difficulty raising iron levels if they are deficient in copper. Have your red blood cell copper levels checked and, if low, supplement with copper.
Having said that, iron IVs can be a life-changing medical treatment for those with very low iron levels (such as ferritin levels below 15 ng/ml). Don’t forget to have the other iron indices checked, as I discussed in the July issue of Natural Way to Health. Finding a physician knowledgeable about natural therapies, including iron IVs, is a big help. I suggest looking at www.acam.org to find a physician near you.