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Dr. Andrew Rynne
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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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Can intake of iron supplements damage the liver?

Dear Doctor, This is Diptiman Chakravorty age 32 male, obese individual height 5ft 7 in, weight 122 kgs. Two years back, I was diagnosed with fatty liver. Last month, I started feeling extremely weak and consulted a Dr. Blood tests revealed low Haemoglobin levels of 10.8. Last year it was 14. I was advised upper GI endoscopy, Colonscopy and stool for routine and occult blood tested. Upper GI endoscopy result:-Gastritis in antrum and healed duedonal ulcer. Colonoscopy report :Normal. and occult bleeding in stool negative. Dr prescribed Vivolib 500, Omez 500, Kinpride, Pibizyme, ursocol 300 and mild iron supplement Livogen(once daily at night). Within a week my hb levels went to 12.2 which Dr says is not bad.Other drugs described above are being used to treat gastritis and fatty liver. II have also been asked to loose weight. I am not diabetic and do not smoke or drink alcohol. My query is does gastritis cause such types of anemia, and how long should I continue to take Livogen (iron supplement)? Moreover, I am worried whether taking iron supplement will damage liver(fatty liver)further and am I in the taking the right medicnes for my condition? MY SGPT and SGOT are at normal levels at present..my present energy levels are low, yet I am walking 20 minutes daily.My doctor loosing weight gradually through exercise and diet modifications will help, but I am worried about anemia :-too much iron :-liver damage, too less anemia. How do I strike a balance. Please advise accordingly. I am still young and keep worrying constantly due to my helath conditions.
Fri, 17 Apr 2020
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Internal Medicine Specialist 's  Response
Hello,

You are definitely a high risk for Fatty liver disease. If you dont consume alcohol then it is Non alcoholic fatty liver disease.

Weight reduction and restricted intake of Refined carbohydrates will help in the management. No specific medications are available to manage Fatty liver except for Vitamin E intake.

You need to monitor you Serum lipid profile and blood sugar profile.
Now coming to your anaemia. I would need to know your complete blood profile to check for the nature of anaemia.

If it is iron deficiency anaemia intake of Iron intake will help. Only in specific conditions like Thalassaemia (even carriers) and Haemochromatosis oral iron intake is to be restricted.

Once the haemoglobin level is normal you need not continue Iron intake. Antral gastritis usually does not reduce Hb levels.

Only severe erosions in the GI tract, bleeding ulcers and vascular malformations can cause low Hb levels. Usually Stool for OBT is positive in these cases.

I would suggest you to monitor your Hb levels and check stool for Routine examination (as worms are a common cause for anemia). You may discontinue your iron supplements once your Hb level normalises and monitor henceforth.

Hope I have answered your query. Let me know if I can assist you further.

Take care

Regards,
Dr. Ayusmati Thakur
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Can intake of iron supplements damage the liver?

Hello, You are definitely a high risk for Fatty liver disease. If you dont consume alcohol then it is Non alcoholic fatty liver disease. Weight reduction and restricted intake of Refined carbohydrates will help in the management. No specific medications are available to manage Fatty liver except for Vitamin E intake. You need to monitor you Serum lipid profile and blood sugar profile. Now coming to your anaemia. I would need to know your complete blood profile to check for the nature of anaemia. If it is iron deficiency anaemia intake of Iron intake will help. Only in specific conditions like Thalassaemia (even carriers) and Haemochromatosis oral iron intake is to be restricted. Once the haemoglobin level is normal you need not continue Iron intake. Antral gastritis usually does not reduce Hb levels. Only severe erosions in the GI tract, bleeding ulcers and vascular malformations can cause low Hb levels. Usually Stool for OBT is positive in these cases. I would suggest you to monitor your Hb levels and check stool for Routine examination (as worms are a common cause for anemia). You may discontinue your iron supplements once your Hb level normalises and monitor henceforth. Hope I have answered your query. Let me know if I can assist you further. Take care Regards, Dr. Ayusmati Thakur