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DFSP, dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans diagnosed. Is it fine to run for a marathon with iron infusion?

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My 42-year old husband was diagnosed with DFSP,Dermatofibrosarcoma Protuberans back in Nov. 2011. They took out a large tumor from his back the size of a mango. He is cancer free now. This week his iron level was tested and it came back with the iron level at 5%. He is training for a marathon and it's on April 22nd.
My question: Is it ok for him to run the marathon even if he can get the iron infusions before the race?
Posted Tue, 22 May 2012 in Skin Cancer
Answered by Dr. Indranil Ghosh 13 hours later


Thanks for the query.

I am sure your husband is doing fine from the Dermatofibrosarcoma Protuberans (DFSP) point of view. But you have mentioned his iron saturation is only 5%. What is his is hemoglobin level? That is the thing which matters when someone is going for strenuous exercise.

If his hemoglobin level is below 12 gm/dl (which is likely scenario) I feel he should refrain from running the half marathon this time. He should wait for the hemoglobin to rise. Iron infusions take time to raise hemoglobin (may be few weeks).

Another issue is why a 42 yr old athlete should have iron deficiency?
Is he losing blood anywhere? Has his stool been tested for occult blood? - These issues need to be addressed as well.

A review with your hematologist is warranted to determine the cause.

Hope I have answered your query. Please let me know if you have any further queries.

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