The effect of iron on growth and frequency of infection in infants

Iron deficiency anemia is the world’s most common deficiency anemia. Owing to numerous primary and secondary preventive measures, its prevalence in developed countries is continuously and signifi cantly declining, whereas in underdeveloped countries itstill poses a major public health problem. The favorable infl uence of iron on early motor development has been known for decades,while its eff ects on linear growth and frequency of infection are still a matter of controversy. Our survey revealed the prevalence ofiron defi ciency anemia in the population of Croatian infants to be rather high. Prophylactic supplementation of iron, as suggestedby the latest recommendations, does not aff ect linear growth or the incidence of infectious illness, therefore presenting a safe anddesirable preventive measure. As the harmful eff ects of iron defi ciency anemia on the children’s wellbeing have been established, it isnecessary to raise awareness of the importance of its prevention and treatment among parents and primary care pediatricians.
Keywords: anemia, iron-defi ciency; growth and development; infection; infant
Category: Original scientific paper
Volume: Vol. 59, No 1, january - march 2015
Authors: Kranjčec I., Roganović J.
Reference work: Paediatr Croat. 2015;59:1-6

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