Iron dextran (Injection)
Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Oct 13, 2022.
Anaphylactic-type reactions, including fatalities, have followed the parenteral use of iron dextran. Have resuscitation equipment and personnel readily available during administration. Administer a test dose, and only administer full dose in the absence of signs or symptoms of anaphylactic-type reaction. Observe patients during administration for anaphylactic-type reaction. Use iron dextran only in patients no amenable to oral iron therapy. Patients with a history of drug allergy or multiple drug allergies may be at increased risk of anaphylactic reactions .
Commonly used brand name(s)
In the U.S.
Available Dosage Forms:
Therapeutic Class: Parenteral Mineral-Trace Mineral
Uses for iron dextran
Iron dextran is an iron replacement product that is used to treat iron deficiency, such as anemia (not enough iron in the blood) or blood loss in patients with certain conditions (eg, hemophilia, gastrointestinal bleeding).
Iron is a mineral that the body needs to produce red blood cells. When the body does not get enough iron, it cannot produce the number of normal red blood cells needed to keep you in good health. This condition is called iron deficiency (iron shortage) or iron deficiency anemia.
Iron dextran is to be given only by or under the direct supervision of your doctor.
Before using iron dextran
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For iron dextran, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to iron dextran or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Use of iron dextran is not recommended in children younger than 4 months of age.
No information is available on the relationship of age to the effects of iron dextran in geriatric patients. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related liver, kidney, or heart problems, which may require caution in patients receiving iron dextran.
There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.
Interactions with medicines
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are receiving iron dextran, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Using iron dextran with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
- Baloxavir Marboxil
- Magnesium Sulfate
Using iron dextran with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
Interactions with food/tobacco/alcohol
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Using iron dextran with any of the following may cause an increased risk of certain side effects but may be unavoidable in some cases. If used together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use iron dextran, or give you special instructions about the use of food, alcohol, or tobacco.
- Phytic Acid Containing Food
Other medical problems
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of iron dextran. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Allergies, history of or
- Asthma, history of or
- Heart or blood vessel disease or
- Kidney infection or
- Liver disease or
- Rheumatoid arthritis—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
Proper use of iron dextran
A nurse or other trained health professional will give you or your child iron dextran. Iron dextran is given through a needle placed in a vein or as a shot into a muscle (usually in the buttock).
You may be given a small test dose of iron dextran to make sure you or your child are not allergic to it. The rest of your dose will be given at least one hour after the test dose.
Do not use iron supplements while you or your child are being given iron dextran shots unless your doctor tells you to.
Precautions while using iron dextran
Your doctor will check your progress closely while you or your child are receiving iron dextran. This will allow your doctor to see if the medicine is working properly and to decide if you should continue to receive it. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects (eg, too much iron in the blood).
Iron dextran may cause a serious type of allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis requires immediate medical attention. The most serious signs of this reaction are very fast or irregular breathing, gasping for breath, or fainting. Other signs may include changes in color of the skin of the face, very fast but irregular heartbeat or pulse, hive-like swellings on the skin, and puffiness or swellings of the eyelids or around the eyes. If these side effects occur, get emergency help at once.
Tell your doctor right away if you have the following symptoms after receiving iron dextran: chills, backache, dizziness, headache, moderate to high fever, joint or muscle pain, nausea, or vomiting.
Tell any doctor or dentist who treats you that you are using iron dextran. Iron dextran may affect certain medical test results.
Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.
Iron dextran side effects
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
Incidence not known
- blood in the urine
- bluish color of the fingernails, lips, skin, palms, or nail beds
- blurred vision
- chest pain or discomfort
- cold, clammy skin
- difficulty with moving
- difficulty with swallowing
- dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
- fast, slow, pounding, or irregular heartbeat or pulse
- fast, weak pulse
- feeling of warmth
- hives or welts, itching, or rash
- lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting
- muscle pain or stiffness
- no blood pressure or pulse
- pain in the joints
- pounding in the ears
- puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
- redness of the face, neck, arms, and occasionally, upper chest
- redness of the skin
- stopping of heart
- swollen, painful, or tender lymph glands in the neck, armpit, or groin
- tightness in the chest
- unusual tiredness or weakness
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
Incidence not known
- Abdominal or stomach pain
- change in taste
- soreness or pain at the injection site
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
More about iron dextran
- Check interactions
- Side effects
- Dosage information
- During pregnancy
- Drug class: iron products
- En español
Related treatment guides
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.