Overcoming barriers that inhibit proper treatment of anemia.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Intravenous (i.v.) iron and recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO), like all other medications, are associated with the risk of adverse events. Historically, the primary concern with iron therapy has been the possibility of iron overload, which exposes the individual to the effects associated with nontransferrin-bound iron. Experience with EPO use has demonstrated an association with hypertension and with the upregulation of a number of markers of inflammation. The impact of these potential adverse effects merits careful analysis, given that both i.v. iron and EPO are designed for long-term use in a patient population at high risk for infection and cardiovascular disease. However, the incidence of iron overload and the risks associated with nontransferrin-bound iron have dramatically been reduced since the introduction of EPO therapy, and no data exist that demonstrate a definitive association between i.v. iron and an increased risk of morbidity related to infection or cardiovascular disease. On the other hand, EPO use is associated with hypertension, endothelial dysfunction, and prothrombotic and inflammatory states in hemodialysis patients. Risks associated with hypertension can be minimized by using the lowest effective EPO dose, which may be achieved through the regular use of i.v. iron. Judicious use of both i.v. iron and EPO may optimize cardiovascular outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S9-12
JournalKidney international. Supplement
Issue number101
StatePublished - May 2006


  • Anemia
  • Erythropoietin
  • Hypertension
  • i.v. iron
  • Iron overload
  • Renal failure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology

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