TAKING iron supplements on alternate days for treating iron deficiency anemia might be as good as daily intake, an ongoing research of the UST Hospital (USTH) hematology unit suggests.

Dr. Irene Castillo, the study’s lead investigator, said that should their hypothesis prove true, it could cut costs for anemia treatment worldwide.

“If we are able to prove that every other day is as good as daily, then that would make treatment of iron-deficiency anemia a lot cheaper,” Castillo told the Varsitarian.

“The findings of the study will not only benefit us in the Philippines, but it will be used as a basis for determining iron deficiency worldwide. The study will become a basis of a possible game-changing practice in iron deficiency anemia management.”

The research, titled “Comparing oral iron supplementation using alternate-day dosing to the standard of care consecutive-day dosing in iron-deficient women with or without mild anemia: a randomized controlled trial in Switzerland and the Philippines,” is done in collaboration with the Swiss university Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH) Zürich.

The USTH is currently recruiting Filipino women aged 18 to 45 to participate in the study.

Participants must not be pregnant, breastfeeding, hypertensive, obese or overweight, smokers, or currently taking iron supplements.

Those who pass the screening will be given free iron supplements for six months. 

They will undergo seven free follow-up check-ups for monitoring and will be given a “small incentive per visit.”

Interested participants may schedule their screening and orientation every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the UST Hospital Benavides Cancer Institute. They may contact Justine Natividad at 0920-278-4936 or Jacqueline Agustin at 0991-211-1856 for scheduling.


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