Skip to main content

Carbonyl iron

Generic name: carbonyl iron [ car-BAH-nill-I-ern ]
Brand names: Feosol Caplet, Icar, Iron Chews, Wee Care, Ferra-Cap, Elemental Iron
Dosage forms: oral suspension (15 mg/1.25 mL), oral tablet (45 mg), oral tablet, chewable (15 mg)
Drug class: Iron products

Medically reviewed by on Mar 6, 2023. Written by Cerner Multum.

What is carbonyl iron?

Carbonyl iron is an iron replacement product. You normally get iron from the foods you eat. Iron helps your body produce red blood cells that carry oxygen through your blood to tissues and organs.

Carbonyl iron is used to treat or prevent iron deficiency and iron deficiency anemia.

Carbonyl iron may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.


Keep carbonyl iron out of the reach of children. An accidental overdose of carbonyl iron can be fatal to a child.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use carbonyl iron if you are allergic to it, or if you have:

Ask a doctor or pharmacist if it is safe for you to use this medicine if you do not have an iron deficiency. Carbonyl iron is generally not for use by people who have a normal iron balance.

Carbonyl iron tablets may contain milk. Tell your doctor if you have lactose intolerance or a milk allergy.

Ask a doctor before using this medicine if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Your dose needs may be different during pregnancy or while you are nursing.

Your dose needs may be different during pregnancy or while you are breast-feeding.

Do not give this medicine to a child younger than 12 without medical advice.

How should I take carbonyl iron?

Use exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Carbonyl iron may be taken with food if it upsets your stomach.

The chewable tablet must be chewed before you swallow it.

Shake the oral suspension (liquid) well just before you measure a dose. Measure liquid medicine with the dosing syringe provided, or with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

If you need a blood transfusion, tell your caregivers that you are using carbonyl iron.

Do not take carbonyl iron for longer than 6 months without your doctor's advice.

Store at room temperature, away from moisture and heat. Keep this medicine out of the reach of children. An accidental overdose of iron can be fatal to a child.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time to take next dose, skip the dose you missed and take the next regularly scheduled dose as directed. Do not take a double dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222. An overdose of carbonyl iron can be fatal, especially to a child.

Overdose symptoms may include diarrhea, bloody or tarry stools, fever, vomiting, severe stomach pain, pale skin, blue lips or fingernails, weak but rapid pulse, shallow breathing, and seizure (convulsions).

What should I avoid while taking carbonyl iron?

Avoid taking carbonyl iron within 2 hours before or 2 hours after you take other medicines. Carbonyl iron can make it harder for your body to absorb other medicines.

Carbonyl iron side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Common side effects of carbonyl iron may include:

  • diarrhea, constipation;

  • nausea, vomiting, stomach pain;

  • tooth discoloration; or

  • dark-colored bowel movements.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Carbonyl iron dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Iron Deficiency Anemia:

50 mg orally three times a day.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Iron Deficiency Anemia:

Premature neonates:
2 to 4 mg elemental iron/kg/day divided every 12 to 24 hours (maximum daily dose = 15 mg).

Infants and children <12 years:
Prophylaxis: 1 to 2 mg elemental iron/kg/day (maximum 15 mg) in 1 to 2 divided doses.

Mild to moderate iron deficiency anemia:
3 mg elemental iron/kg/day in 1 to 2 divided doses.

Severe iron deficiency anemia:
4 to 6 mg elemental iron/kg/day in 3 divided doses.

What other drugs will affect carbonyl iron?

Ask a doctor or pharmacist if it is safe for you to use carbonyl iron if you are also using any of the following drugs:

This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with carbonyl iron, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.