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Iron supplementation for chronic heart failure.

If you have been told you have chronic heart failure (CHF) it means that your heart is not working well enough to pump the blood to your organs and tissues around your body.

Your heart may have been damaged or weakened by several conditions such as coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, heart valve defects or other factors such as alcohol misuse or viral infection.1

About 50 % of heart failure patients have some form of iron deficiency (ID), with or without anaemia. 2,3 If you are suffering from CHF, there are a few reasons why you may also be suffering from ID: 4

  • You may be absorbing less iron from your food into your bloodstream because of changes to the gut wall
  • You may not have enough iron in your diet
  • Drug interactions may reduce the amount of iron you absorb
  • Medications may also cause internal bleeding which means that more iron is lost from your body than normal

Having ID can affect your quality of life and even your prognosis,5 so it is important that you talk to your doctor, if you think you have signs of ID.


  1. Cowie MR, Mosterdft A, Wood DA, Deckers JW, Sutton GC, Grobbeef DE. The epidemiology of heart failure. Eur Heart J 1997;18:208-225.
  2. Ebner N, von Haehling S. Iron deficiency in heart failure: a practical guide. Nutrients 2013;5(9):3730-3739.
  3. Klip IT, Comin-Colet J, Voors AA, Ponikowski P, Enjuanes C, Banasiak W, et al. Iron deficiency in chronic heart failure: an international pooled analysis. Am Heart J 2013;165(4):575-582.
  4. Mcdonagh T, Macdougall IC. Iron therapy for the treatment of iron deficiency in chronic heart failure: intravenous or oral? Eur J Heart Fail 2015;17(3):248-262.
  5. Jankowska EA, Rozentryt P, Witkowska A, Nowak J, Hartmann O, Ponikowska B, et al. Iron deficiency: an ominous sign in patients with systolic chronic heart failure. Eur Heart J 2010;31(15):1872-1880.
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