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      Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management (submit here)

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      Update of a comparative analysis of cost minimization following the introduction of newly available intravenous iron therapies in hospital practice


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          The clinical need to be able to administer high doses of intravenous iron conveniently as a rapid infusion has been addressed by the recent introduction of ferric carboxymaltose and subsequently iron isomaltoside 1000. Neither requires a test dose. The maximum dose of ferric carboxymaltose is 1000 mg. The maximum dose of iron isomaltoside 1000 is based on 20 mg/kg body weight without a specified ceiling dose, thereby increasing the scope of being able to achieve total iron repletion with a single infusion. This ability to give high doses of iron is important in the context of managing iron deficiency anemia, which is associated with a number of clinical conditions where demands for iron are high. It is also an important component of the strategy as an alternative to blood transfusion. Affordability is a key issue for health services. Recent price changes affecting iron sucrose and ferric carboxymaltose, plus modifications to the manufacturers’ prescribing information, have provoked this update.


          This study is a comparative analysis of the costs of acquiring and administering the newly available intravenous iron formulations against standard treatments in the hospital setting. The costs include the medication, nursing costs, equipment, and patient transportation. Three dosage levels (600 mg, 1000 mg, and 1600 mg) are considered.

          Results and conclusion

          The traditional standard treatments, blood and iron sucrose, cost more than the alternative intravenous iron preparations across the dose spectrum and sensitivities. Low molecular weight iron dextran is the least expensive option at the 1600 mg dose level but has the caveat of a prolonged administration time and requirement for a test dose. At 600 mg and 1000 mg dose levels, both iron isomaltoside 1000 and ferric carboxymaltose are more economical than low molecular weight iron dextran. Iron isomaltoside 1000 is less expensive than ferric carboxymaltose at all dose levels. Newly available iron preparations appear to be clinically promising, cost effective, and practical alternatives to current standards of iron repletion.

          Most cited references42

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          Guidelines on the diagnosis and management of iron deficiency and anemia in inflammatory bowel diseases.

          Anemia is a common complication of inflammatory bowel diseases. An international working party has formed and developed guidelines for evaluation and treatment of anemia and iron deficiency that should serve practicing gastroenterologists. Within a total of 16 statements, recommendations are made regarding diagnostic measures to screen for iron- and other anemia-related deficiencies regarding the triggers for medical intervention, treatment goals, and appropriate therapies. Anemia is a common cause of hospitalization, prevents physicians from discharging hospitalized patients, and is one of the most frequent comorbid conditions in patients with inflammatory bowel disease. It therefore needs appropriate attention and specific care.
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            Intravenous iron optimizes the response to recombinant human erythropoietin in cancer patients with chemotherapy-related anemia: a multicenter, open-label, randomized trial.

            Recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEPO) is the standard of care for patients with chemotherapy-related anemia. Intravenous (IV) iron improves hemoglobin (Hb) response and decreases dosage requirements in patients with anemia of kidney disease, but its effect has not been studied in randomized trials in cancer patients. This prospective, multicenter, open-label, randomized trial enrolled 157 patients with chemotherapy-related anemia (Hb
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              Oxidative stress and renal injury with intravenous iron in patients with chronic kidney disease.

              Intravenous iron is widely prescribed in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and can cause oxidative stress. The relationship of oxidative stress and renal injury in patients with CKD is unknown. Whether renal injury can occur at a time point when transferrin is incompletely saturated is also unclear. We conducted a randomized, open-label, parallel group trial to compare the oxidative stress induced by intravenous administration of 100 mg iron sucrose over 5 minutes and its protection with N-acetylcysteine (NAC) in 20 subjects with stage 3 or 4 CKD. Transferrin saturation was measured with urea polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, oxidative stress by malondialdehyde (MDA) measurement by high-performance liquid chromatography, and renal injury by enzymuria and proteinuria. Reduced and oxidized glutathione and free radical scavengers as well as urinary monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 were also measured. Parenteral iron increased plasma concentration and urinary excretion rate of MDA, a biomarker of lipid peroxidation, within 15 to 30 minutes of iron sucrose administration. This was accompanied by enzymuria and increase in proteinuria. In contrast, saturation of transferrin was not maximally seen until 3 hours after the end of infusion. Oxidative stress, enzymuria and proteinuria were transient and were completely resolved in 24 hours. NAC reduced acute generation of systemic oxidative stress but failed to abrogate proteinuria or enzymuria. Intravenous iron produces oxidative stress that is associated with transient proteinuria and tubular damage. The rapid production of oxidative stress even when transferrin is not completely saturation suggests free iron independent mechanism(s) to be operative in producing oxidative stress and transient renal injury. Long-term implications of these findings need further study.

                Author and article information

                Ther Clin Risk Manag
                Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management
                Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management
                Dove Medical Press
                12 December 2011
                : 7
                : 501-509
                Department of Renal Medicine, Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals National Health Service Trust and Hull York Medical School, Kingston upon Hull, UK
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Sunil Bhandari, Department of Renal Medicine, Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals National Health Service Trust and Hull York Medical School, Kingston upon Hull, HU3 2JZ, UK, Tel +44 1 48 267 4566, Fax +44 148 267 4998, Email sunil.bhandari@ 123456hey.nhs.uk
                © 2011 Bhandari, publisher and licensee Dove Medical Press Ltd.

                This is an Open Access article which permits unrestricted noncommercial use, provided the original work is properly cited.

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                iron isomaltoside 1000,ferric carboxymaltose,iron deficiency anemia,single high dose,iv iron,cost minimization


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