Iron deficiency remains a disease difficult to recognize by those who express the specific symptoms, although its consequences can be serious and the prevalence among the population is relatively high.
Thus, it is essential for each person to understand the role of iron in the body and the consequences generated by the fact that the iron level is not within the proper parameters.
The specialists make efforts to increase the level of awareness about iron deficiency and iron deficiency anemia, as major public health problems and to highlight their significant impact on patients.
Iron deficiency is present among a third of the population, globally. It is most common among women who are premenopausal or pregnant and children under the age of 5. In Europe, for example, iron deficiency affects up to about 33% of premenopausal women, up to 77% of pregnant women and up to 48% of children. Iron deficiency is also commonly associated with chronic inflammatory diseases such as chronic heart failure, chronic kidney disease and irritable bowel syndrome.
Iron is necessary for the whole body. It is essential for the production of red blood cells and for ensuring the efficient functioning of the heart and skeletal muscles. Iron also plays a vital role in combating infections and diseases, maintaining the optimal energy level and normal brain function. When iron deposits in the body are low (iron deficiency), almost all aspects of life, such as metabolism, mental and physical health, work productivity and even sexual function, can be affected. The World Health Organization states that iron deficiency can lead to a 30% decrease in physical exertion capacity.
One-third of the world's population suffers from iron deficiency, a condition commonly found among premenopausal women, pregnant women and children under the age of five.
Non-recognition of the symptoms of iron deficiency and iron deficiency anemia is often the biggest obstacle to a diagnosis. Common symptoms include fatigue, pallor, brittle nails, craving for non-food materials such as mud, clay or ice, lack of ability to concentrate. However, the symptoms of iron deficiency may manifest differently, being difficult to identify and may be associated with a number of other conditions.
"Iron deficiency affects a significant number of women around the world and can have a significant impact on their health and quality of life. Maintaining an optimal level of iron in the body is especially important for pregnant women. During pregnancy, iron deficiency affects not only the health of future mothers, but also the health of the fetus, with important consequences in terms of their neurocognitive development. Therefore, it is essential that iron deficiency be prevented especially in pregnant women. Thus, careful monitoring of pregnancy is required, the recommendation of a diversified diet, rich in vegetables, fruits, high quality proteins, vitamin supplements and mineral salts ”, declared Mrs. Prof. Univ. Dr. Doina Anca Pleșca, Head of Pediatric Clinic, Children's Clinical Hospital "Dr. Victor Gomoiu ”.
The consequences of iron deficiency differ from person to person, but they may be associated with a decline in health and well-being in general.13 Even without anemia, iron deficiency can be debilitating, can aggravate a chronic condition pre-existing and can contribute to increased morbidity and mortality. In children in particular, iron deficiency can significantly affect their cognitive and motor development.
"Iron deficiency is a condition that can have major consequences on the body and therefore there is a real need to increase the level of attention to the iron deficiency and a better understanding of the symptoms. It is the most widespread nutritional deficiency globally and is a condition that remains undiagnosed and under-treated, although it has a major impact not only on the adult, but also on the development of the child, "said Professor Univ. Dr. Gabriel Mircescu, Head of Clinical Nephrology, Clinical Hospital of Nephrology "Dr. Carol Davila ”.
For more information on iron deficiency, visit www.carentadefier.ro.