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Avatar universal

Can I take iron tabs during tx?

I have problem with my hemoglobin it is going down every week and my white blood cells as well, the Dr. said if they can't be stabilize we will have to stop the treatment which i don't think i want to do, the Dr. didn't mention anything about the risk of taking of taking iron during tx but i read somewhere and i don't really remember where that it is not ideal or something like that, my question is have anyone faced the same and what you did if yes? is it ok to take the iron tablets?
please advise
44 Responses
87972 tn?1322664839
This is a subject your doctor should address. Typically, HCV patents have iron storage problems, and additional iron can be detrimental to their liver.

Hopefully, your doctor performed an iron study as part of your baseline examination, and should know whether or not you’ll benefit from supplemental iron.

If your hemoglobin and white cells are dropping drastically, you might be a candidate for one of the rescue drugs; Neupogen can boost white cell production, Procrit/epo can be used for red cells. However, adequate iron stores need to be in place for the Procrit to work effectively.

What is your hemoglobin currently? And absolute neutrofils value?

Good luck—

179856 tn?1333550962
Procrit has been essential for saving many of our courses of treatment.  In fact (and this is just a guesstimate) I'd say over half of us that have done treatment easily have been on it at one time or another.  Many doctors aren't really aware that they can prescribe it for a hepc patient - but it does work great with hemolytic anemia. I have never seen one person have problems from it in all of the years I have been on here either.
179856 tn?1333550962
BTW - no generally you don't want to take iron at all costs so find out your numbers and tell your doc you want the Procrit. They will not give it to you unless your hemo drops to under ten generally and at that point you will be feeling the effects pretty strongly.
717272 tn?1277594380
Drug-induced anemia (HGB below 11) is different from iron-induced anemia, so the treament is different. I was on TX through a clinical drug trial so they provided the Procrit to keep my hemoglobin above danger levels.  My insurance company paid for the Neulasta (same as Nuepogen but more expensive and the effect lasts longer).  I had a $100 co-pay for the Neulasta, well worth it.  Those 2 drugs can keep you safely on the treatment meds and the Procrit, after a few weeks of weekly shots, can also make you feel much better.

Many people do stabilize after the first few months of TX, but it can be hard to get to the stabilization point without the rescue meds.
Avatar universal
In order to help you need to know,
a) How many weeks of treatment have you done?
b) Have you had a viral load test during treatment-what is it and what was it before treatment?
c) What are your current haemoglobin and white cell values?

The depletion in red cells can be managed either by taking a hormone supplement (procrit/epoetin) or by reducing the ribavirin dose.If your viral load is undetectable this can be safely done.
Similarly the white cells can be artificially boosted,or the dose of interferon reduced.Reducing or skipping interferon is not desirable.
Iron tablets are not really the issue here.
Avatar universal
Thanks to everyone for the reply

I have done 6 weeks of tx and my hemoglobin was 15.4 when i started, every week it goes down by 1 or at least 0.5 so now it is 11.2.

a) How many weeks of treatment have you done?
6 weeks
b) Have you had a viral load test during treatment-what is it and what was it before treatment?
I have done that before the treatment and just yesterday the took a sample and the result will take sometime so I am not yet sure of the numbers to compare.
c) What are your current haemoglobin and white cell values?
HB is 11.2 and the white cell 3.1

I don't know if this information help, but i would ask the Dr. about procrit, i'm not really sure the Dr. is fully aware of the tx details and the work a rounds that you guys knows.

any further details will really be appreciated.

Thanks to all of you for the replies
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