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Pregnant, taking Calcium Citrate Malate, VIT D3, Folic Acid, ECOSPRIN and Haem up Gems. Having constipation. Suggest?

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Practicing since : 2010
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this is XXXXXXX here. I am expecting my 2nd baby, just completed 3rd month. So my gyne doctor has included CALCIUM CITRATE MALATE,VIT D3 & FOLIC ACID TABS, ECOSPRIN and HAEM UP GEMS. I am taking folic acid and Pyricontin tabs as well. My query is: I am going through constipation everyday. I spoke to my cousin who is a general doctor. He told me to take FERONIA XT instead of HAEM UP gems TAB which actually is the cause of heavy constipation. Before taking the tablet i still wanted to be sure with a specialist. Can I go ahead and take FERONIA XT instead of HEAM UP gems if both tabs are almost same or do i still confirm with my gyne doctor.

Please let me know if there is any restriction to any particular food that may lead to constipation. I am taking glasses of water as much as possible early morning.

Posted Tue, 3 Sep 2013 in Pregnancy
Answered by Dr. S Patra 26 hours later
Brief Answer:
According to me HAEM GEMS UP is Better.

Detailed Answer:

Constipation is a very common problem with iron supplement. Abdominal bloating and constipation is commonly associated symptom. However, body demand of iron is high at this period and you have to take iron supplements to combat pregnancy. It also helps in better growth and development of the growing baby.

Now, right choice of iron tablet is more important in pregnancy period. FERONIA XT contains ferrous ascorbate (14% elemental iron) and HAEM UP GEMS tab contains ferrous fumarate (33% elemental iron). Therefore, HAEM UP GEMS tab is superior to FERONIA XT in pregnancy period due to more elemental iron and better absorption.

Ferrous succinate (35% elemental iron) is alternative to ferrous fumarate. Some other iron salts like ferrous gluconate and iron polysaccharide which are much less constipating. However, they contain less amount elemental iron. These iron supplementation can be taken with additional iron XXXXXXX food stuffs (like dry fruits, egg yolk, beans, cereals, green vegetable etc) during pregnancy period. Kindly, consult with your treating doctor regarding this.

If constipation is concerning with iron pills, I would recommend you avoid some food stuffs like red meat, sugar XXXXXXX products, dairy products, processed food, tea/ coffee, spicy and fatty stuffs. Drink 2.5 to 3 liter water daily & consume more green vegetables & fresh fruit.

Some steps to prevent iron supplement induced constipation:

1) Take iron tabs/ capsule in 2 to 3 small divided doses according to requirement.
2) Drink orange juice or take vitamin C tab for better iron absorption.
3) Do light exercise daily to stimulate healthy bowel movements.
4) Enrich your daily diet with fresh green vegetables and salads.
5) Take stool softener or laxative (like ispaghula husk) at bed time - if needed.

Hope, above information is quite helpful to you. If you need any clarification, you can freely ask me.

Wish your good health and successful mother hood.

Dr Soumen
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