How much iron do I need?

The body normally contains 3000-4000mg of #iron. Daily losses are minimal (1-2mg). #irondeficiency can take several years to slowly develop, often due to increased losses (heavy periods 30-50mg per months or pregnancy (the baby takes 1200mg) or reduced absorption (#vegetarians, poor diet, #IBD, post bariatric surgery)

#Irondeficiency means you are often >1000mg low on iron (Ferritin < 15 severe, #Ferritin < 30 mild). Dietary modification is the first step and add iron supplements. Dietary #iron is absorbed at 4-16mg per day in a well-balanced iron rich diet, so do the math! it will take 3-9 months to restore your levels with a healthy diet and iron tablets.

In people where this does not work or increasingly people who have ‘problems with iron tablets’ an option is a #ironinfusion. An #ironinfusion enables a full treatment dose up to be given to correct you to normal levels in one 30-minute treatment; the whole 1000-1600mg (20mg/kg).


Author: Professor Toby Richards

Mr Toby Richards is a Professor of Surgery at University College London. He has pioneered anaemia management and intravenous iron therapy in the UK. His underlying belief is that optimising patient’s health and fitness before surgery will improve their recovery and benefit their outcomes. He has embedded clinical research and development into all areas of practice.

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You can download our patient information sheet: Patient Information Sheet

To book an appointment please email us a short history and copy of your blood results, we will respond with options about online or in person consultations and availability for an infusion (normally most Monday and Friday afternoons):

Our staff are available and happy to answer your every question

020 3875 8171