Iron Deficiency After Gastric Bypass Surgery
After a gastric bypass, iron deficiency and anaemia are more common than after a surgical intervention or an adjustable lap bypass. This is particularly true for women. In fact, iron deficiency is associated with more than half of postmenopausal women who undergo this procedure.
After Gastric Bypass Surgery, What Causes Iron Deficiency?
Iron deficiency is a symptom of the surgery that occurs as a result of the changes made. The first portion of your intestine absorbs the majority of the iron from your food (duodenum). Food, on the other hand, bypasses the duodenum after a gastric bypass procedure. This can result in an iron deficiency as well as other nutritional issues.
If you have this type of surgery, the amount of fibre in a conventional multivitamin (18 mg) would not be enough to prevent anaemia. If your iron levels are low after a gastric bypass, you’ll need to consider taking more iron.
After Gastric Bypass Surgery, Who is at Peril for Iron Deficiency?
Women that have these multiple surgeries after menopause are more likely to have iron deficiency. It affects more than half of all women in this age range. Iron deficiency can occur in men who had gastric bypass surgery. Men, on the other hand, are much less likely to experience this.
What are the Clinical Signs of Iron Deficiency Following a Gastric Bypass Procedure?
The wellbeing of your hair, epidermis, and nails is dependent on iron. It also aids in the production of haemoglobin. This is the substance that carries oxygen around the body and is found inside red blood cells. You may experience the following symptoms if you are anaemic due to iron deficiency:
- Tiredness or a lack of energy (fatigue)
- A fast heartbeat
- Hair loss is a common problem.
- Nails that are brittle
- Breathing problems
- Pain in the chest
- In your ears, there’s a strange pounding sensation.
- Do you have a desire for ice or clay?
How is Iron Deficiency Diagnosed After Gastric Bypass Surgery?
Any of the symptoms listed above will be noted by your healthcare provider. They’ll also arrange blood tests to see if you have anaemia or iron deficiency. Iron deficiency begins to deplete your body’s iron stores in its early stages. Testing your ferritin levels can reveal this. This is a protein that helps your body store iron. If your body iron levels are too low, your iron levels are probably low as well.
If your iron deficiency has progressed to iron deficiency anaemia, a full blood count test will be required to rule out any other issues. Low haemoglobin, fewer red blood cells, and relatively small red blood cell size are all possible causes.
Iron deficiency anaemia may not be linked to gastric bypass surgery in men or women past menopause. Your doctor will want to make sure you are not anaemic because of blood loss somewhere else, such as in your intestine. A colonoscopy may be required to determine the source of internal bleeding from the large intestine.
What are the Options for Treating Iron Deficiency Anaemia After Gastric Bypass Surgery?
Many people can increase their iron levels by making dietary changes. If your iron deficiency is the result of gastric bypass surgery, your doctor will most likely prescribe iron supplements. This extra iron should be obtained through a prescription from your doctor, rather than from the over (OTC) supplement. The only exception is if your practitioner recommends a specific OTC iron supplement for you. After a gastric bypass, your doctor may recommend a specific type of metal that you can absorb better.
Iron Supplements After Gastric Bypass Surgery
Although it is possible to consume iron supplements after gastric surgery, they can have side effects, including nausea and constipation. Some women may need additional iron supplements, which may lead to an IV line and blood transfusions. If you’re considering bariatric surgery, you should consider the guidelines your surgeon provides. Iron supplements should be taken at least three times a week. For best results, avoid taking them on the same day.
Iron deficiency is common in the United States, but it’s even more common among bariatric patients. Symptoms include dizziness, lightheadedness, fatigue, and a fast heartbeat. Iron deficiency can also lead to brittle nails. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to treat post-operatively, and a blood transfusion is necessary in some cases.
Another study suggests that iron supplementation after gastric bypass surgery may prevent anemia. Patients may be at risk for anemia, even if they don’t have a history of deficiency. If you’re concerned about anemia after the surgery, a healthcare provider can perform blood tests to determine whether it’s caused by the surgery. If it is, treatment of the deficiencies could improve your quality of life.
Postoperative changes in eating habits may also contribute to an iron deficiency after a RYGB. Red meat is the primary source of iron in the typical American diet. However, a gastric bypass patient’s lack of red meat may also cause an intolerance to red meat. Additionally, studies have found an increased risk of vitamin B12 and folate deficiency in patients who had a gastric bypass. A 24-hour recall diet history is recommended following the procedure.