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Iron Deficiency Anemia

What is iron deficiency anemia?

The most common cause of anemia is iron deficiency. Iron is needed to form hemoglobin. Iron is mostly stored in the body in the hemoglobin. About 30 percent of iron is also stored as ferritin and hemosiderin in the bone marrow, spleen, and liver.

What causes iron deficiency anemia?

Iron deficiency anemia can be caused by:

What are the symptoms of iron deficiency anemia?

The following are the most common symptoms of iron deficiency anemia. However, each child may experience symptoms differently. Symptoms may include:

How is iron deficiency anemia diagnosed?

Iron deficiencyanemia may be suspected from general findings on a complete medical history and physical examination of your child, such as complaints of tiring easily, pale skin and lips, or a fast heartbeat (tachycardia). Iron deficiency anemia is usually discovered during a medical examination through a blood test that measures the amount of hemoglobin, or number of red blood cells, present and the amount of iron in the blood. In addition to a complete medical history and physical examination of your child, diagnostic procedures for iron deficiency anemia may include the following:

Treatment for iron deficiency anemia:

Specific treatment for iron deficiency anemia will be determined by your child's physician based on:

Treatment may include:

Iron-Rich Foods Quantity Approximate Iron
Content (milligrams)
3 ounces 13.2
Beef liver
3 ounces 7.5
Prune juice
1/2 cup 5.2
2 ounces 4.2
1/2 cup 3.75
Ground beef
3 ounces 3.0
1/2 cup 3.0
Bran flakes
1/2 cup 2.8
Pork roast
3 ounces 2.7
Cashew nuts
1/2 cup 2.65
3 ounces 2.6
1/2 cup 2.55
3 ounces 2.5
1/2 cup 2.4
Lima beans
1/2 cup 2.3
Kidney beans
1/2 cup 2.2
Turkey, dark meat
3 ounces 2.0
1/2 cup 1.9
Roast beef
3 ounces 1.8
Green peas
1/2 cup 1.5
1/2 cup 1.5
1 1.1
Sweet potato
1/2 cup 1.0
Green beans
1/2 cup 1.0
1 1.0

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Online Resources of Hematology & Blood Disorders

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