Skip to main content

Some Tips for Your First Iron Infusion

I've been sharing my infusion stories now for a few years.  I've gotten quite a few messages mostly from women nervous about getting their first infusion. 

I get it.  I remember being a bit nervous and having no idea what to expect.  You can read about my first iron infusion experience here:  Intravenous Iron Infusion and Me

Since my first infusion just over three years ago, I've had a number of rounds.  I'd like to pass along a few tips to hopefully make the experience a bit easier for you.

  1. Drink plenty of water beforehand.  I've found it is much easier for them to get the IV in when you are hydrated.  
  2. Find a chair close to the restroom.  Yes, this goes back to tip #1.  You can wheel the IV into the restroom and I find it is just easier to be somewhere in the vicinity.
  3. Bring a pillow.  You can bring your own blanket but often, if you ask, they'll bring you a blanket.  If you are having Benadryl, it is just easier to nap with a pillow.
  4. Dress in layers.  Even if it is quite warm outside, they keep those rooms chilly to help keep down the spread of germs and illness.  Even on warm days, I'll bring in a sweatshirt.  
  5. Bring snacks and water.  I've had infusions that have lasted for up to four hours.  Having a little something to eat helps.
  6. Bring something do to.  Yes, you may end up napping the entire time but, other times, I've found having my notebook computer or a book helps pass the time.
  7. I don't know if this is just me but I find that once they take the IV out and bandage my hand, the longer I leave that bandage on, the less likely I am to bruise.  I usually leave it on an hour.  Maybe it has been a fluke that the times I've taken it off quickly, I've had bruising but I figure it doesn't hurt to keep it in place.
 Have you had an infusion?  Would you like to add any tips?   I'd love to hear from you.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Ferrlecit - My Favorite Iron

Is it possible to have a favorite iron?  Seems strange but, yes, I do have a favorite iron now.

Posted last time about how exhausted I was and I was exhausted.  When my ferritin levels get low, I just get so tired and try to fit in naps when I can.  I'm a pretty busy mom and just don't have time for that level of exhaustion.  Along with the exhaustion comes such guilt.  I feel so guilty for needing naps or just not being able to do it all. 

So, had my levels tested in February.  My hemoglobin was fine.  I think it was in the eleven range which is great for me.  My ferritin however was below 10.

Just a little side note:  If you are tired and suspect anemia, always ask for your ferritin numbers.  Even if your hemoglobin is normal, a really low ferritin score indicates that there is a problem and you will be anemic soon.  Often, exhaustion sets in once your ferritin is low.  You can avoid all the additional problem with anemia if you treat the low ferritin.  Iron pills will usua…

Had a Hysterectomy! Did it FINALLY Cure My Iron Deficiency Anemia?

Last I posted, I mentioned the possibility of a hysterectomy.  Long story short (perhaps I'll blog about that next), my surgery was canceled because the insurance company decided the day before the surgery they would not pay for it!  To say I was a mess that day is a huge understatement.

Fast forward, I sent the insurance company a long letter detailing my day-to-day existence with anemia and the side effects from my too-frequent infusions. They approved the surgery.

I'll blog more on the experience of surgery but I ended up having a Da Vinci Robotic Hysterectomy.  The doctor made four small incisions and operated the controls from outside my body! 

Let me just say, this surgery was far more difficult on me than I thought it would be.  Recovery has been slow but, reading online, I see that is common for many women which makes me feel just a bit better.

About six weeks after my surgery, I had my bloodwork done.  I was a nervous wreck.  I didn't feel anemic but, then again,…

Getting Serious About My Iron Deficiency Anemia - It's Hysterectomy Time!

WARNING: May be too graphic a post for some

I was diagnosed with Iron Deficiency Anemia more than thirteen years ago and have been treated with iron infusions for more than five years.  Although a hysterectomy has been suggested a few times over the years, I never took it seriously.

I am now.

So what has changed?

I am not 100% certain my anemia is caused by my cycle.  We've stopped my periods with the use of birth control pills.  I still needed infusions.  I've lessened the flow radically with Lysteda.  Still needed infusions.  Had to give up the pills because, after an extended time on them, I just felt down and lethargic (yes, even more lethargic than with my anemia...I felt the difference).  I quit the Lysteda because the migraines it caused became worse than the pain associated with my period.

But, my periods have become worse.  I did a crash diet a few years back and it seriously altered my cycles.  They were never great to begin with but they've become absolutely unb…