The Open Colorectal Cancer Journal


ISSN: 1876-8202 ― Volume 7, 2014

Optimal Iron Replacement for Colorectal Cancer-Induced Anaemia

The Open Colorectal Cancer Journal, 2010, 3: 27-31

Roderick J. Alexander, Alison Alexander, Sue Surgenor, Elizabeth J. Williams, Guy F. Nash

Poole General Hospital, Longfleet Rd, Poole, Dorset BH15 2JB, UK.

Electronic publication date 03/11/2010
[DOI: 10.2174/1876820201003010027]


Iron deficiency anaemia (IDA) is commonly a result of colorectal cancer. Higher preoperative haemoglobin (Hb) is associated with an improved post-operative survival. The endpoint of normalising patients Hb is to reduce the need for perioperative blood transfusion which has oncological, safety and economic benefits. Methods: This study aims to compare the overall effect and cost between oral iron and two forms of parenteral iron, in raising the Hb of 53 consecutive colorectal cancer patients with IDA. The pre- and post-treatment Hb were measuring over time for oral and two formulations of parenteral iron (CosmoFer® and Venofer®), as were the need for supplemental pre-operative blood transfusions. The Total Hb rise and Hb rise/day were calculated as was the overall cost (including blood transfusions) in each of the three iron supplementation groups. Results: Both total Hb rise and Hb rise/day were significantly higher in the Venofer® (p=0.048, p=0.002) and CosmoFer® groups (p=0.034 & p=0.001) over oral iron. The oral iron group required significantly more blood than the Venofer® (p=0.04) and CosmoFer® groups (p=0.01). Although there was a trend for oral iron to cost more than parenteral, this did not reach significance. Conclusions: This study suggests that the end point of transfusion reduction is possible by the increased Hb rise rate of Venofer® or CosmoFer®. In addition, parenteral iron supplementation is no more costly than the traditional oral route, taking into account blood transfusion requirement

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