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Z Gastroenterol. 2009 Feb;47(2):228-36. doi: 10.1055/s-2008-1027876. Epub 2009 Feb 5.

[Pathophysiological-based diagnosis and therapy of iron-deficient anaemia in inflammatory bowel disease].

[Article in German]

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  • 1Gastroenterologie/Ernährungsmedizin, St Elisabethenkrankenhaus, Frankfurt/Main, Germany.


Anaemia is the most frequent extraenteric complication of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD, Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis). A disabling complication of IBD, anaemia worsens the patient's general condition and quality of life, and increases hospitalization rates. The main types of anemia in IBD are iron deficiency anemia and anemia of chronic disease. The combination of the serum transferrin receptor with ferritin concentrations and inflammatory markers allows a reliable assessment of the iron status. Iron deficiency is usually treated with oral iron supplements. However, it is less effective in IBD and may lead to an increased inflammatory activity through the generation of reactive oxygen species. A systematic review of anemia in IBD, its pathogenetic features, epidemiology, diagnosis and therapy based on the evidence from recent studies will be the focus of this article.

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