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Arch Dis Child. 1999 Sep;81(3):247-52.

Iron fortified follow on formula from 9 to 18 months improves iron status but not development or growth: a randomised trial.

Author information

  • 1Menzies Centre for Population Health Research, Tasmania and Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics Unit, University of Melbourne Department of Paediatrics, Royal Children's Hospital, Parkville, VIC 3052, Australia. morleyr@cryptic.rch.unimelb.edu.au

Abstract

AIMS:

Iron deficiency anaemia is associated, in observational studies, with developmental disadvantage. This study tested the hypothesis that feeding iron supplemented formula from 9 to 18 months of age would improve developmental performance.

SUBJECTS AND METHODS:

493 healthy children aged 9 months being fed pasteurised cows' milk were recruited from three UK centres. They were randomised to: cows' milk as before, formula containing 0.9 mg/litre iron, or formula containing 1.2 mg/litre iron, until 18 months of age. Bayley mental and psychomotor developmental indices were measured at 18 months, as were growth and haematological indices.

RESULTS:

Children fed iron fortified formula had higher plasma ferritin concentrations, but there were no significant intergroup differences in development or growth.

CONCLUSIONS:

There are no developmental or growth advantages in children given iron supplemented formula, but a benefit for a minority who were anaemic, or the possibility that a benefit may emerge at a later age, cannot be excluded.

Comment in

PMID:
10451399
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC1718063
Free PMC Article
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