Role of IV administered Iron sucrose with recombinant erythropoietin in the treatment of moderate and severe iron deficiency anemia in the third trimester of pregnancy

Namrita Sandhu, Sanjay Singh


Background: Iron deficiency Anemia in pregnancy is one of the most common and intractable nutritional problems in the world today. The objective of this study was to investigate the therapeutic efficacy and safety of rHuEPO combined with IV iron sucrose, in the treatment of pregnant women in third trimester with moderate and severe iron deficiency anemia and whether addition of erythropoietin will increase the rate of rise of Hb without compromising on the safety of the therapy.

Methods: 60 pregnant women in the third trimester, diagnosed as cases of moderate and severe iron deficiency anemia were enrolled in this study with 30 subjects in each of the 2 groups. Recombinant Erythropoietin 2000 IU s/c and Inj Iron sucrose 100 mg slow intravenously in 100 ml 0.9% NS over 1 hr on alternate days was administered to the case group and the control group was administered only iron sucrose slow IV in the same dose on alternate days till target Hb (11gm%) was reached. Efficacy measures were reticulocyte count, increase in Hb/week, time to target Hb level and need for continued therapy after 4 weeks.

Results: In the case group, the increases in Hb were greater after 1 week of treatment and this was found to be significant (P < .01), the median duration of therapy was shorter in the case group (22 versus 34 days), with more patients reaching the target hemoglobin level by 4 weeks as opposed to 7 weeks in the control group. Average rise in Hb/week was much more in the case group. The groups did not differ with respect to maternal and fetal safety parameters.

Conclusions: Iron sucrose plus rhEPO is an effective treatment for iron deficiency anemia in pregnancy probably because of a synergistic action, with rhEPO stimulating erythropoiesis and iron sucrose delivering iron for hemoglobin synthesis.



Haemoglobin, Inj Iron sucrose, Iron deficiency anemia, Recombinant Erythropoietin, Reticulocyte count, Serum Ferritin, Third trimester pregnancy

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